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SEPTA Metro aims to make Philadelphia's public transportation system easier to use

SEPTA to change name, look to rail lines to make public transit system easier to use
SEPTA to change name, look to rail lines to make public transit system easier to use 03:22

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- SEPTA is introducing a new name and look to their rail lines in 2024 that aims to take the guesswork out of how to use the Philadelphia region's public transportation system.

Management hopes SEPTA Metro will make the process easier for commuters to understand and for new riders to use the system.

New letters, numbers and colors are coming to SEPTA.

The project is called the SEPTA Metro Wayfinding System.

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SEPTA director of information design Lex Powers said the transit agency will be broken down into three categories: SEPTA Bus Network, SEPTA Regional Rail Network and SEPTA Metro Network.

Powers has played a pivotal role in this project aimed to make SEPTA more user-friendly.

"It's necessary for us to come up with some sort of an easy term for that group of lines," Powers said. "It's a new term for Philly. We get that. It's not something that we've used before, but it really says what we need to say in terms of frequency and around-the-clock, affordable service."

SEPTA Metro will encompass the Market Frankford Line, Broad Street Line, Trolleys 10, 11, 13, 15, 34, 36 101 and 102, the Media-Sharon Hill Line and the Norristown High Speed Line.


"It's a big project," Powers said. "We're talking about tens of thousands of signs, over 100 stations, a half million riders a day."

"The signage underground needs to be much better," SEPTA rider Regina Kelly said.

So what will change?

"Brand new signage systemwide, new transit maps," Powers said. "A new app, new websites. New terminology that is more accessible and easier to understand."

One SEPTA rider said the new system looks "very New York-ish."

Another said it should help make things clearer.

"Maybe a little clearer for people from out of town to know the different lines," Kelly said.

SEPTA will associate each line with a color and a letter. The shortcuts include the Market Frankford Line as the letter "L."

"The Market Frankford Line already uses blue," Powers said, "and people know that really well so we didn't want to change what was already working. Broad Street Line already uses orange."


Trolley lines are green with a T.

The Route 15 trolley is yellow with a G for Girard.

Pink for the Media-Sharon Hill line with a D for Delaware County.

The Norristown High Speed Line will be purple with an M to refer to Montgomery County.

"When I came to Philadelphia, people talked to me about the L and you should take the L to go here and there," SEPTA public information manager Elvira Mendez said. "I was looking for something that said L, and I couldn't find it because all the signs say Market Frankford Line. Now with this new project, we are simplifying that."

SEPTA Metro will be introduced gradually starting in the new year with the Broad Street Line. Its new website is still in the beta testing phase, but commuters are encourage to give their input.

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