SEPTA is encouraging the public to attend a virtual Transit Talk tomorrow to learn about two options being considered for the redesign of the bus network. The session will be held from 6:30 to 7:30 pm. On Tuesday, April 19, and anyone interested can sign up at https://www.septabusrevolution.com.
The release of the options, which will be detailed during Tuesday’s Transit Talk, marks Phase 2 of Bus Revolution, a key initiative of SEPTA Forward, SEPTA’s strategic plan, and the Authority’s efforts to revamp its bus service and better connect people across the region. Feedback from the public on these two options will be gathered through the spring will help shape the future of the bus network.
“The redesign of our bus network is an extraordinary opportunity to make transit more useful for more people,” said SEPTA General Manager and CEO Leslie S. Richards. “Both of these options build toward the SEPTA Forward vision of a lifestyle transit network that will offer frequent, all-day service to destinations across the city and region.”
The two options to be released tomorrow are based on extensive public feedback—including thousands of survey results, pop-up events at locations across the bus network, and virtual public meetings—and a comprehensive analysis of the current bus network and transit demand. Both options feature a simplified network with more frequent routes:
- Option 1 is more streamlined and includes an expansive frequent network, including on the weekends.
- Option 2 is similar to the current network, with a smaller frequent network and more low-frequency coverage service.
- Both options introduce microtransit (flexible, on-demand transit service operated with smaller vehicles) to provide more reliable service in low density parts of the region.
The recommended draft final bus network will include components of both options to meet the goal of faster and more effective service. Following public feedback this spring, SEPTA will release an updated plan later this year. There will then be opportunity for additional public feedback before implementation of the new bus network in fall 2023.
“Public transit increases equity and access to opportunity while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and traffic fatalities. Updating our bus network to work better for everyone is how we deliver those benefits,” SEPTA Assistant General Manager, Planning and Strategy Jody Holton said. “We look forward to receiving public feedback on these two options to ensure that we are designing a network that best serves the region’s changing travel needs.”
Bus Revolution is now midway through its three-year process. Phase 1 launched in Spring 2021 and focused on understanding the strengths and weaknesses of the current bus system. Public outreach in Fall 2021 focused on transit trade-offs that impact bus service. Phase 2 of Bus Revolution is focused on presenting the two network options and collecting public feedback that will inform the design of the draft recommended network. Phase 3—sharing the final recommended network redesign for public feedback—will begin this fall.
Along with Bus Revolution, SEPTA is advancing several transformative initiatives to achieve the vision of a seamless, lifestyle transit network set in SEPTA Forward. This includes Reimagining Regional Rail, for which SEPTA expects to share draft options later this spring.