New maps SEPTA is busy installing on subway stations and trains have a number of updates.
The old regional rail numbers and colors are gone. The product includes the Route 15 trolley. And the pedestrian connection between the Market-Frankford El, the Broad-Ridge Spur and PATCO no longer exists.
Except, it still does.
A close reading of the new map shows that SEPTA took out the pedestrian connection at the 8th Street Station.
In the map’s last iteration, it accurately depicted the way the station worked: Riders can easily walk underground between the PATCO, Broad-Ridge Spur and El platforms to transfer between lines.
Dashed lines ― symbolizing the pedestrian connection ― linked all three stops, which share a single station under Market Street.
The new map is missing the dashed line leading to the El. In other words, close readers would think a pedestrian connection exists between PATCO and the Broad-Ridge Spur ― but not with the El.
In fairness, the omission probably won’t impact a lot of people.
As Matt Mitchell of the Delaware Valley Association of Rail Passengers noted, not many riders actually transfer from the El to the Broad-Ridge Spur.
And, he said, riders using the old map sometimes thought that there was a free interchange ― meaning riders don’t have to pay to transfer ― between the two services. (There isn’t. A pedestrian connection just means that there’s an easy walk between different services. Pedestrian connections exist between regional rail and the El at the three Center City rail stations, for instance.)
While the oversight may not be that big a deal, SEPTA won’t admit that there’s anything wrong with the current map.
“The person responsible for the map did not believe it was a mistake. It was just something we did not do,” spokeswoman Jerri Williams said, adding that not every SEPTA map in the past has included the connection.
At the same time, she admitted the pedestrian connection still exists ― despite not appearing on the map.
Williams said that no correction will be made to the thousands of new maps SEPTA has printed for the regional rail line name change project and said that future versions of the map may, or may not, include the pedestrian connection that’s actually there.
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