Lt. Governor Jim Cawley joined SEPTA Board Chairman Pasquale “Pat” T. Deon, Sr., SEPTA General Manager Joseph M. Casey, Congressman Michael Fitzpatrick, Senator Robert Tomlinson, Senator Charles McIlhinney and Representative John Galloway to announce plans for Levittown Station. The reconstruction project will enhance service for customers at a key station along the Trenton Regional Rail Line and represents one of many critical improvement projects under SEPTA’s renewed “Catching Up” capital improvement program. The Levittown Station Reconstruction Project is moving ahead thanks to state Act 89, the state’s new transportation funding bill, which was approved by the Legislature and signed by Governor Tom Corbett last fall.
“A safe and efficient transportation network is essential to Pennsylvania’s economic success. Under Governor Corbett’s leadership, the state responded decisively to address decades of underinvestment in the Commonwealth’s critical transportation infrastructure,” Lieutenant Governor Cawley said. “I am proud of the work we did to create a plan that secures Pennsylvania’s future while balancing the needs of all Pennsylvanians, and I want to express my sincere appreciation to Senator Tomlinson, Senator McIlhinney and Representative Galloway for their foresight and resolve on this important issue.”
The much anticipated Levittown Station reconstruction project will transform the station from a 1950s era station into a state of the art intermodal transportation facility, adding modern amenities such as a new station building, high level platforms, pedestrian overpass and reconfigured Fallsington Avenue/Route 13 Expressway station entrance. The station will also be fully Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) accessible and commuters will benefit from a parking increase of approximately 70 spaces.
“The renovation of Levittown Station is an important milestone for SEPTA as we move to address some of our most critical needs, including vital infrastructure upgrades and equipment replacement,” SEPTA Chairman Deon said. “SEPTA is an economic engine for the region, and this work is essential to keep us moving forward.”
Nearly 11,000 riders use the Trenton Line each day, and on an average weekday approximately 1,264 trips begin or end at Levittown Station. Demand on all Regional Rail lines continues to grow. Last year, Regional Rail ridership reached a record 36 million trips, and has increased by 50 percent over the last 15 years.
Congressman Fitzpatrick, a longtime supporter of SEPTA projects, helped secure federal funding for the project. “Public transportation is an important facet of living and working in Bucks County, and my constituents increasingly rely on SEPTA to meet their daily transportation needs,” Fitzpatrick said. “In securing funding for Levittown Station and other worthwhile projects throughout the County, I am pleased to support the investments SEPTA is making on behalf of its riders. The federal government is a valuable partner in these types of transportation improvements, and I look forward to continuing to work with my colleagues in Congress to identify sustainable, long-term sources of funding.”
Representative Galloway, an advocate for the station, credits the progression to bi-partisan effort. “The Levittown Station reconstruction project is extremely important to the Bucks County community. We have been working together to move this project forward for a long time,” Galloway said. “The planned station improvements will address concerns such as parking, traffic enhancements and better access for pedestrians and cyclists. More importantly, I look forward to working with commuters, residents and all stakeholders as the project moves forward.”
“This station is just one example of many reconstruction projects that will finally be able to move forward because of this legislation,” Senator Tomlinson said. “We are standing here today because of our combined efforts.”
Senator McIlhenny added, “The planned Levittown Station improvements represent the types of projects that are now possible as a result of Act 89. This comprehensive transportation funding solution is essential to the future of mass transit, roads, highways and bridges in our region and throughout the Commonwealth.”
SEPTA plans to award contracts for more than $100 million in new capital projects in 2014 alone, including a number of improvements that have been deferred in recent years due to funding constraints. The pace of this work will increase as more funding comes in from Act 89. Within five years, SEPTA projects its annual Capital Budget to exceed $600 million – or more than double the $300 million annual amount SEPTA has had available for improvements in each of the last four years.
SEPTA has more information available about its plans to address state of good repair needs throughout the system. Specific projects are detailed in SEPTA’s “Catching Up” plan, which was announced last month during a presentation to the SEPTA board. To read more about “Catching Up” and watch a video presentation about the plan, go to SEPTA’s Website at http://septa.org/media/releases/2013/12-19a.html