After record-breaking ridership on SEPTA in 2013, fewer Philadelphians took public transit last year, according to a new report from the American Public Transportation Association (APTA). The system maintained its status as the 6th-most travelled metro system, but transit trips were down about 7 million in total, or, about 2 percent on the year. Nationwide, passengers on public transportation increased by 1 percent in 2014 (barely outpacing U.S. population growth), contributing to 10.8 billion rides, the highest total mark in 58 years. Read more »
Americans love their cars. We all know that. About 86 percent of U.S. residents commute to work by car or truck, and most of them are driving alone. A new visualization at the always-interesting FlowingData.com really drives that home. There’s hardly a corner of the country where other commute modes–transit, walking, biking–beat out driving, by oneself, in a car. Read more »
“I wish you were going to Vegas,” says the girl in the bright orange tank top. There’s something both infuriating and admirable about her tone. The way her declarative statements bend upward in pitch, as if she’s asking a question, reminds me of Valley Girls in the ’80s, and Paris Hilton. But this hot mess clearly doesn’t care what anyone around her thinks. If she were on a reality TV show, I’d say good for you — be yourself, screw the haters. But we’re on a SEPTA train bound for the ’burbs sometime around 6 p.m., and just seconds ago, the conductor made an announcement that we’re sitting in what’s known as the QuietRide car. Even if you’re not a regional-rail regular, you can probably figure out what that’s supposed to mean. Orange Tank Top and her male companion — who, in clear violation of some hipster-slacker ethos, is rocking both a backpack and a messenger bag — drone on, oblivious to both the friendly reminder and to the fact that no one in the entire car is talking except for them.
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The Delaware Department of Transportation said Wednesday that part of the I-495 bridge could open early, perhaps before Labor Day. Previous projections put the bridge opening sometime after the holiday.
The I-495 bridge has been closed since early June, when support columns for the bridge — which carries I-495 over the Christina River — were found to have tilted.
DelDOT is drilling 32 new shafts to create new support columns. That drilling is expected to be finished ahead of schedule, on Tuesday of next week, July 15th. Look how excited the press release is about it: “This is possible because the drilling operation has gone exceedingly well, and because all of the necessary personnel, material and equipment have converged from around the United States on the site when needed.” U-S-A! U-S-A!
If you drive through the first state for work, your commute just got a bit worse. Okay, a lot worse.
Philly.com reports a bridge on I-495 in Delaware is closed indefinitely. Four columns that carry I-495 over the Christina River, a tributary of the Delaware, are tiled 2.4 degrees (or about 4 percent). Reports of the tilting columns came in Friday, but the bridge was not closed until Monday.
Officials say the bridge is considered fracture critical, which means the failure of one column could lead to the collapse of the entire bridge.
Commute between Center City Philadelphia and New Jersey? Starting next week, your trip over the Ben Franklin Bridge is going to suck, reports KYW 1060’s Mike DeNardo. Okay, he didn’t say it like that, but that’s what I got out of his report.
PATCO riders have been dealing with slow trains due to track work since a two-year, $103 million refurbishment project on the bridge began in January. Today, PATCO closed the south track; it’s expected to last 60 days. PATCO expects to lose 300,000 riders due to the summer closure.
Drivers start to feel the pain of bridge work starting today as well. During rush hour, one lane will be closed on the bridge, with two lanes shuttered during off-peak times.
In case you’re wondering what the holdup is on 11th Street between Market and Chestnut, it is this CVS truck adding more chaos to your morning commute. Read more »
Yesterday was a harrowing rush hour for commuters heading back to New Jersey. A PATCO train was evacuated after passengers smelled smoke, leaving hundreds of people stranded at the abandoned Franklin Square station just after 5 p.m. Monday. Officials say a short in the motor caused the smoke, though no train cars actually filled with smoke.
The train’s operator was treated with oxygen and taken to the hospital. Passengers were evacuated to another train that picked up the route. Per Action News, some decided to climb out of the Franklin Square station instead and get rides home.
We’d scold Philly Mag reporter Victor Fiorillo for snapping pictures and emailing them from the road, but he’s quite clearly not moving right now.