Regional Rail Sets SEPTA Ridership Record

NBC10 reports that for SEPTA, business is a’boomin’: “Today, SEPTA officials announced Regional Rail ridership has hit a record — 36,023,000 trips by customers during Fiscal Year 2013, or from July 1, 2012 to June 30, 2013. The 36 million trips represents a 2.2 percent increase.”

Regional Rail, of course, is the part of SEPTA that carries the most traffic between the city and the suburbs. You could—as I’m certain some of our readers are eager to do—point out this means that an awful lot of people have to work here and like to live out here. If you’re secession-minded, though, you might alternatively suggest that these numbers prove just how integrated the region is—and that SEPTA-ville must come with Philadelphia when we form a new state with southern New Jersey.

Similarly, we recall a time not long past when Rep. Darryl Metcalfe, the state’s leading Evil Stereotypical Republican, described SEPTA as a form of “welfare”—despite math suggesting its the transportation system in his part of the state that is more heavily subsidized by outsiders. We wonder if Mr. Metcalfe wants to tell all those suburban Regional Rail riders, commuting to and from jobs whose taxes pay his salary, that they are sucking at the teat of the welfare state.

We doubt it.

Forgive the morning crankiness! What realistically should happen with these numbers, of course, is that SEPTA should use them to pitch the state, reasonably, on the need for more funding. That’s what is happening. So…good!