Well, I finally hitched up with a Silverliner V.
Train No. 9563, the Temple U. to Bryn Mawr run that leaves Suburban Station at 5:14 was my ride.
I grabbed the seat behind what train nuts call the “railfan seat” at the front of the first car. It was quite an experience. Even though SEPTA has roped off the front two seats on the lead car in order to give the engineer more space outside the downsized driving cubicle, the view out of the train from the first half dozen seats was unique – I could see everything going on in front of the train, the switching, stations coming up, trains approaching and passing from the opposite direction. Did you know there is quite an uphill grade from Narberth to Bryn Mawr?
Then there was the room and access and ample railings to grab and bright feel provided my the huge windows that flooded in natural light. Oh, and the ride was smooth and the public address and television screens were easy to hear and follow.
Something’s funny though. As Andrew Goodman, an associate at PennPraxis/PlanPhilly noted, it’s telling that we are amazed at amenities that other transit riders have taken for granted for decades.
Still, the bottom line is this: SEPTA has bought some very good cars from Hyundai Rotem. Impressive interior space that is roomy enough to accomodate wheelchairs and bikes and beautifully detailed exteriors that make the Silverliner IIs and IIs look like they belong in the Old West.
I f you want to try out the Silverliner Vs, go to this link on the SEPTA website to see where the 11 new cars in revenue service, out of a total of 120 that will eventually be delivered, are making runs.
That said, here’s where the Silverliner V production and delivery schedule stands: Since January, all car shells are in Philadelphia, with 62 car shells at the final assembly facility, and 38 shells
stored at the Philadelphia port due to lack of storage space at the Weccacoe plant. During April, five production cars were completed for delivery to SEPTA, where they will undergo final testing.