8.14.2008

THE RIGHT DIRECTION

For years, SEPTA was going in the wrong direction. Budget shortfalls cast a pall over the agency, and annually a doomsday scenario was trotted out that described fare hikes and service cuts that would have to be implemented if funding gaps weren't plugged. It was the opposite way you'd want a transit agency to have to go - higher fares and less frequent runs make it far less attractive to commit to using transit, which reduces ridership and causes even more financial pain.

So it is a happy day today, because SEPTA, on the heels of dedicated long-term funding for the first time in forever, is announcing service expansions all over the place. (See here and here.) It doesn't hurt that $4 gas has contributed to record-high ridership numbers. More service means more people will choose to ride, which means more revenues, which means even more service expansion possibilities. It's a virtuous cycle deserving of a victory lap.
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