SEPTA’s long-anticipated renovations to its Wayne Junction Station are set to get underway, supported by a $3.98 million competitive livability grant from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA). FTA Administrator Peter M. Rogoff presented the grant to SEPTA at a ceremony held at the station today.
“Wayne Junction is one of SEPTA’s busiest stations, serving more than 190,500 riders annually via five Regional Rail lines, one trackless trolley route and two bus routes,” said SEPTA General Manager Joseph Casey. “Renovations to the station are long overdue and have been in the planning stage for many years. SEPTA thanks the FTA for providing this grant which will help us better serve our passengers.”
Located at 4494 Germantown Avenue, Wayne Junction Station has been a fixture in Philadelphia’s Nicetown neighborhood since it was opened by the Reading Railroad in 1881. The Frank Furness-designed station was rebuilt in 1901 and has fallen into a serious state of disrepair over its more than 100 years of use.
Congressman Chaka Fattah (PA-02), a member of the House Appropriations Committee and advocate for urban mass transit, said, “Wayne Junction is historic but badly in need of repair so it can continue as a transportation hub in North Philadelphia. This project is smart use of our federal dollars for infrastructure, job creation and improving mass transit that is so critical to Philadelphia and our other major urban areas.”
“As high gas prices take a bite out of family budgets, the Obama Administration will continue to work with communities to make sure commuters have affordable, convenient ways to get to work, school or the grocery store,” said Administrator Rogoff. “That’s why we’re so pleased to partner with SEPTA to transform Wayne Junction into a state-of-the-art, energy-efficient, accessible transit facility.”
The extensive, three-year project is expected to begin in fall 2011. Renovations will include installing new elevators and an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant egress throughout the station; upgrading the power, signal and track infrastructure servicing the station; constructing a new inbound high level platform and repairing the existing high level outbound platform; restoring passenger tunnels and stairways from Wayne Avenue, Germantown Avenue and Windrim Avenue; improving passenger amenities including signage; lighting; Audio Visual Public Announcement (AVPA) system; closed-caption television; HVAC system; and shelters, canopies and benches; installing new police and revenue facilities; providing for SEPTA’s new fare technology; and painting the Wayne Avenue Bridge, which serves SEPTA’s Chestnut Hill East Regional Rail Line.
“This renovation project will update the station into one that meets the future operational needs of the Authority,” Casey added. “We also hope that the project will serve as a catalyst for further community revitalization in area surrounding Wayne Junction.”
“Improvements to Wayne Junction will help to provide economic renewal for the historic Germantown and Nicetown neighborhoods,” said Senator Robert P. Casey Jr. (D-Pa.) “This is an exciting project for the residents and businesses that will benefit from safer, more accessible and environmentally friendly access to SEPTA transportation services.”
Wayne Junction Station is eligible for inclusion on the Historic Register. Renovations to the station building and Germantown Head House will be coordinated with the Germantown Preserve and Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.
The Wayne Junction Station project was among 22 SEPTA was forced to cut from its Fiscal Year 2011 Capital Budget due to a 25 percent funding reduction. The project is anticipated to cost $30 million. In addition to the grant, the FTA also provided SEPTA with $4 million in funding for engineering. In January SEPTA’s Board of Directors approved a proposal to issue up to $23 million in Grant and Fare Revenue Bonds to pay for the remaining project costs.