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May 08, 2020

SEPTA to resume most regular transit schedules, fare collection

Buses, subways and trolleys all shifting toward normal service later this month

SEPTA Resume COVID-19 Thom Carroll/for PhillyVoice

SEPTA plans to resume most regular service on transit lines beginning May 17-18, including the return of fare collection. Maximum rider capacity and social distancing measures will continue to be enforced.

SEPTA will restore some service and fare collection later this month as the transit system transitions out of the lifeline service schedule enacted amid the coronavirus outbreak. 

SEPTA plans to return all bus, trolley, subway and Norristown High Speed Line service to pre-COVID-19 levels beginning Sunday, May 17 and Monday, May 18, with notable exceptions. Regional Rail schedules will remain on lifeline service until further notice. 

To maintain social distancing, capacity limits will remain in place as follows:

• 40-foot buses – 20 riders

• Articulated buses – 30 riders

• Routes 204, 310, 311, LUCY Gold/LUCY Green – 10 riders

• Trolleys – 25 riders

• Norristown High Speed Line – 30 riders

Routes 204, 310, 311, and LUCY Gold and Green Routes will continue to operate on a reduced schedule. Route 91 remains suspended.

On buses, trolleys and the Norristown High Speed Line, front-door boarding and fare collection will resume May 18. Riders have been boarding these vehicles from rear entries without paying a fare since early April. 

Passengers will continuing exiting through the rear doors to maintain social distancing. All riders are strongly urged to wear masks.

Trolley routes 101 and 102 will continue using buses until May 30. Trolley stations at 13th Street, 19th Street, 33rd Street and 36th Street will remain closed until further notice.

Both the Market-Frankford and Broad Street lines will have increased subway service to the stations that are currently open and listed below. The other stations will remain closed until further notice.

Market-Frankford Line: Frankford Transportation Center, Arrott Transportation Center, Erie- Torresdale, Allegheny, Huntingdon, Berks, Girard, Spring Garden, 8th Street, 11th Street, 15th Street, 30th Street, 34th Street, 40th Street, 46th Street, 56th Street, 60th Street and 69th Street Transportation Center.

Broad Street Line/Broad-Ridge Spur: Fern Rock Transportation Center, Olney Transportation Center, Hunting Park, Erie, Allegheny, North Philadelphia, Cecil B. Moore, Girard, 8th Street, Race-Vine, City Hall, Walnut/Locust, Ellsworth/Federal, Snyder, Oregon and NRG.

Night Owl Bus Service along both lines will resume on weekdays and overnight train service will return on weekends.

Select concourse stairways and access points to Market-Frankford and Broad Street line stations will remain closed until further notice. They include the Dilworth Park stairs, 13th and Market entrances and the Broad Street Line headhouses between South Penn Square and Walnut Street. 

The 15th and Market, North Filbert Street, and Broad and Locust entrances remain open.

SEPTA has confirmed at least 225 cases of COVID-19 and five deaths among staff since the start of the pandemic. The authority and TWU Local 234, the union representing more than 5,000 transit workers, averted a work stoppage last month after negotiations on safety and protections.

“The health and safety of employees and customers remains SEPTA’s top priority, and this return-to-service plan is focused on enhancing measures we have put in place to reduce crowding and promote social distancing,” SEPTA General Manager Leslie S. Richards said in a statement. “While we are preparing for an eventual increase in ridership, service will continue to be available for essential travel only until further notice. If you do not need to get to work or access life-sustaining services, please do your part to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 by staying off the system.”