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Septa Silverliner V train at Newark Train Station 9-27-10

As reported on Sunday, July 3rd, SEPTA had to remove 120 Silverlines V cars from service due to defects discovered over the holiday weekend.

Regional rail service will be impacted by the reduction of one-third of the number of cars that are normally available, reducing the number of seats by 13,000.  This will impact many regional commuters and SEPTA is encouraging its ridership to seek alternative means of transportation.

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer:

Per its latest advisory, SEPTA “will operate a modified Saturday schedule on Regional Rail in place of Weekday service (Monday-Friday).  Each line will have an extra train that will run earlier than the normal Saturday schedule and additional trains will be added to the AM/PM travel periods. But please remember that all available equipment has to be spread out over the entire Railroad network so the extra service will not reflect normal weekday frequency levels.”

This “enhanced Saturday schedule” contingency plan will likely result in delays and crowded trains.

So, here, the Bicycle Coalition offers some tips for those interested in biking their commute instead of driving or enduring long waits at the regional rail stations.

First, use our regional bike lane map or google maps (click on the bike when using directions) to figure out your route.

Second, see if you can bike to a SEPTA bus stop that will get you to your destination.  This map of Circuit Trails and transit stops shows bus stops within 1/4 of a mile from trails.

Third, bike to stops on the Market Frankford Line, Broad Street Line or Norristown High Speed lines, Route 100/102 trolleys.

Most MFL and BSL stops have bike racks.

Fourth, try biking some of the region’s trails and bike routes to your destination.

From Chester or Montgomery Counties, use these Circuit Trails itineraries for Chester Valley Trail and Schuylkill River Trail.

From Delaware County or Bucks County into Center City along the Delaware River, use PA Bike Route E, which is essentially the East Coast Greenway.

From Delaware County to Center City, use Bicyclists Baltimore Pike, a signed route through Swarthmore to West Philadelphia.

Good luck and let us know how you are doing! Leave a post on our Bicycle Coalition Facebook page or our Biking the Suburbs Facebook group page with observations and/or suggestions for other new bike commuters.

Sarah Clark Stuart

Author

Sarah’s foray into trail and bicycle advocacy began in 2004 when she became involved in the “Free Schuylkill River Park” campaign to preserve public access to the Schuylkill River Trail in Center City, now known as Schuylkill Banks. Since joining the Bicycle Coalition in 2006, she has been a key player in the Bicycle Coalition’s key accomplishments: the $23 million TIGER trail-building grant; naming and building out the Circuit; lobbying successfully for legislation mandating the inclusion of bike parking in new construction projects; Philadelphia’s Complete Streets policy; and coordinating research and analysis of several reports on bicycling in Philadelphia.

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