SEPTA to unveil plans for KOP route

A passenger was attacked on a SEPTA bus early Tuesday in Philadelphia's Logan section. Credit: Metro file photo
Credit: Metro file photo

Google Maps estimates a trip from City Hall to the King of Prussia Mall lasts about an hour on public transportation.

“That one hour is, I think, a very, very conservative estimate of time,” said Byron Comati, SEPTA’s director of strategic planning. “Because most buses are running on the Schuylkill Expressway.”

Like most trips out to the Upper Merion Township mall, buses are victimized by the congestion levels, “unless it’s 3 a.m.,” Comati deadpanned.

In an effort to connect the suburb and the city, SEPTA will announce plans today for a 5-mile extension of the Norristown High Speed Line that would stretch to Valley Forge, the King of Prussia Mall and possibly beyond.

Comati said the new system would shave between 15 and 25 minutes off the commute.

“And just as important as the time savings, is that it’s predictable,” he said.

SEPTA focused on the more than 4,000 employees who commute to Montgomery County every day.

Currently, SEPTA can only run bus routes 123, 124 and 125 to the mall. The Norristown High speed line will get close, but a bus ride is still required.

Comati noted that the project, which could include construction of new platforms along with new tracks, will cost anywhere from $250 million to $400 million. The project is expected to be completed in the next 8 to 10 years.

The Mall estimates that it attracts about 25 million people per year. Valley Forge National Historical Park estimates about 1.5 million people per year.


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