By Jim Melwert
SWARTHMORE, Pa. (CBS) – For most commuters who rely on SEPTA’s Media/Elwyn Regional Rail line, word of a failed house vote on transportation funding (see related story) is concerning, as SEPTA has said it would have to stop service on this line in 2015 without additional funding.
Don Semler, catching a train into the city, says it’s short-sighted not to fund mass transit. “There’s the environmental issues. It’s a convenience, but it’s also something that benefits the economy, benefits the environment and benefits business, I believe.”
Don and other commuters do wonder if there is some brinksmanship at play here, but with each passing step, they say their concern grows of Regional Rail lines shutting down, and the ripple effects that would have on everything from home prices to traffic woes.
“That’s going to be catastrophic for huge numbers of people, from kids to college students,” says SEPTA rider Syndey Evans. “I mean, it’s unimaginable.”
Another woman says without the train, commuting would be much more difficult. “I work at Penn. I can’t even imagine where they would put that many more cars, there just isn’t space. You have to be on a waiting list.”
Seven other regional rail lines would shut down over the next decade.