SEPTA will hold two public hearings on Monday, April 28 regarding the Fiscal Year 2015 Capital Budget and Fiscal Years 2015-2026 Capital Program – a proposal to tackle the transit system’s most pressing needs with an infusion of new state funding. The hearings will be held at SEPTA Headquarters, 1234 Market Street, with sessions at 11:30 am and 5 pm
SEPTA’s capital budget funds initiatives such as infrastructure improvements and the purchase of new bus and rail vehicles. The $571.8 million Fiscal Year 2015 proposal represents a significant increase over recent years, thanks to the approval by the Pennsylvania General Assembly and Gov. Corbett last November of Act 89, which provides a dedicated, long-term funding solution for transportation infrastructure investments in Pennsylvania.
Act 89 will allow SEPTA to launch its “Catching Up” program, which includes work on critical infrastructure such as power substations, bridges, track, maintenance facilities and passenger stations. In addition, SEPTA would initiate the process for replacing trolleys and Regional Rail cars that are well past their useful service lives, while also expanding capacity to address ridership growth and improving accessibility.
The Fiscal Year 2015 Capital Budget would continue funding for the New Payment Technology project – or “smart-card” fare system, which is expected to begin its initial rollout on buses, subways and trolleys later this year. Resources would also be dedicated to expanding SEPTA’s hybrid bus fleet, overhauling existing vehicles and ongoing work related to the federally mandated Positive Train Control signal system.
The full Fiscal Year 2015 Capital Budget and Fiscal Years 2015-2026 Capital Program can be viewed and downloaded online by visiting https://www.septa.org/reports/pdf/capbudget15.pdf.
SEPTA riders and other local residents are invited to ask questions and learn more about SEPTA’s capital program at Monday’s public hearings. Comments can also be submitted in writing through May 2. For more information, please visit https://www.septa.org/notice/capital.html to see the public hearing notice.
An independent hearing examiner will review testimony and submit a recommendation prior to the SEPTA Board’s vote on the proposal, which is expected at its regular monthly meeting on May 22.