A couple of things:
A) Remember, the purpose of an agency like SEPTA is to provide transportation to the areas it serves, which includes tiny Millbourne borough. Other than The El and the Route 21 bus no other SEPTA route serves Millbourne borough
. No bus, no trolley, no Regional Rail - nothing
. The borough is small compared to its neighbors - just under 1200 residents - but not empty. 1200 people get access to one train station and a handful of bus stops.
Remember also that the station is followed only by the terminal, at the end of the line. If it were somewhere further along it might make practical sense to shutter it to speed service along the line but its location negates that, in ways. Generally, a compelling reason is required to shutter
existing infrastructure like a train station, not to keep it operational. Comparatively small numbers of boardings alone is not purpose enough to close train stations. It it were, the Regional Rail map would look much different than it does now.
Originally Posted by Nexis4Jersey
Honestly they should move the zoo somewhere else , more quiet and peaceful like Parts of Fairmount park or Navy Yards...
What on Earth are you talking about?
When was the last time you heard of a zoo
being relocated - and why?
C) Trolleys are neat. Trolleys are cool. I like trolleys. Does anyone here seriously believe that more people would be willing to ride the Route 56
on Erie Avenue
if the trolleys returned?
I'll go this far - the piecemeal return of Philadelphia streetcars is pointless. 'Trolley Jollies' are not a good enough reason to re-instate a trolley on a route 'Trolley Jollies' wouldn't be riding every day. It's Nicetown
. If they were to come back, the smart approach would be the construction of an actual network - a high-capacity network that is more than one route on one street. The Subway-Surface Trolleys operate this way - they branch off of a trunk, can interconnect, use common equipment and are more or less arterial routes. If you're bringing trolleys back to Erie Avenue then perhaps you should install them along Old York Road, and a portion of Germantown Avenue and along Rising Sun. Perhaps they should run to major connecting points like the Venango Loop or Wayne Junction. Make them high-capacity and high-frequency so that people want to use them and view them as a convenient way to move about. Perhaps that's a better way than a single mode replacement based on nostalgia and little else.
D) A Northeast Philadelphia rapid transit route...it's been noted (correctly) that the NE is very car-oriented. It was built that way, particularly north of Cottman Avenue. It needn't be so heavily car-dependent but there aren't many viable options right now. The El drops one off at the front door of Northeast Philadelphia. No one much fancies the thought of a half-hour bus ride after a half-hour El ride to get anywhere on a regular basis. The need for a Northeast Philadelphia rapid transit route is less about the Northeast and more about the larger city that the Northeast is a part of. Think about it - other than South Philadelphia, no part of the city is so sparsely served by any type of rail options - meaning high(er) capacity, grade-separated - and so far away from another part of the city that does that can be reasonably accessed. All three Regional Rail routes in the Northeast (don't forget that the R3 makes a quick appearance in Bustleton) are on the edges of civilization - nothing goes into and through the heart of the Northeast where people from other neighborhoods are usually going and where people from the Northeast already begin their journeys to other parts of town. It's about completing a circle, filling a unnecessary gap. That single route makes a real contiguous connection between the Northeast and the rest of Philadelphia. A single subway trip from South Philadelphia can take you to, say, Oxford Circle. You needn't drive, you needn't disembark and wait for a bus. Do obligatory transfers make transit an attractive option to people with options?
E) Lastly, the Powelton/Drexel thing...
Unless Drexel goes all in on developing those air rights or someone comes out of left field and proposes something positively insane, don't bank on anything. It doesn't make sense.
Think of the enormous effort required to get a proposal approved. To contract it out. To purchase materials and equipment. To acquire land. To prep it for construction. In Philadelphia.
Now multiply all of that times fifty.
Right now, there are more than enough ripe parcels in and around Center City that are infinitely easier to develop for anyone willing to jump through the many unnecessary hoops one must jump through in order to build here. Today, right now, there does not yet exist the 'critical mass' required to really justify something on the scale of whatever would have to result from the development of the air rights. I wouldn't go so far as to say that the time would be right 20 years from now but we can only speculate. Just remember that such a massive undertaking, even piecemeal, would be massive. The rail yards cover five times the acreage
of the World Trade Center site. It would be a concentrated city in its complete form. Pie-in-the-sky...I wouldn't say so. Just not in the foreseeable future, not when there are more practical options for large-scale development in the city.