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SEPTA Moves Forward with Plans to Extend Norristown High-Speed Line to King of Prussia

SEPTA has hired a consultant to analyze different routing options, determine station locations and begin the federal approval process.

According to a release issued by SEPTA, the board of directors approved the selection of a consultant team on Thursday led by AECOM. The team will perform the Alternatives Analysis and Draft Environmental Impact Statement Planning Study for the extension of the Norristown High-Speed Line (NHSL) to King of Prussia.

The study, funded by a federal appropriation to SEPTA and matching funds from PennDOT, Montgomery County and King of Prussia District (KOP-BID), will:

  • Analyze different routing options for the rail extension to the King of Prussia Mall and onward to First Avenue in the King of Prussia Business Park;
  • Determine station locations; and
  • Begin the federal environmental approval process.

The NHSL Extension was identified as the top transportation improvement project for KOP-BID early in the organization's development. The potential for the project to alleviate traffic congestion and address the need for additional transit service in King of Prussia, as well as provide major incentives for economic development in the vicinity of the proposed station stops, has made it a top priority for the King of Prussia business community.   

"We would like to thank SEPTA for taking the next steps to advance this regionally significant project," said KOP-BID Executive Director Eric Goldstein. "We look forward to working collaboratively with GVF, SEPTA, Upper Merion Township, Montgomery County and federal and state legislators to bring this essential public transportation project to reality."

SEPTA also awarded a contract to the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission to conduct ridership modeling, using data on population centers and demographics to project ridership, another essential element to determine the project's qualification for federal funding.

Other members of the consultant team include King of Prussia based Bergmann Associates, LTK Engineering, Malick & Shere and Portfolio Associates.

This phase of the project will take approximately 15-18 months to complete. 

Joseph Heston August 11, 2012 at 02:35 AM
Technically it's not an extension, but a branch. An extension would be the line continued on beyond Norristown, the new line branches off after Gulph Mills.
James Myers (Editor) August 11, 2012 at 03:51 AM
Good point, Joseph. That would make the most sense, but as far as I know, they haven't actually decided how the line will run just yet. That's what the consultants will figure out. "Extension" is SEPTA's word for the project.
Janey February 15, 2013 at 04:02 PM
This project would cripple the area. Influx of crime and bad business from urban areas would penetrate Upper Merion township because the gradient (when comparing crime rates and annual household income) between Philadelphia and KOP is too great. It's the truth, no one wants to talk about it but it's clearly the biggest factor when considering this project.
billpa March 01, 2013 at 03:05 PM
Janey, that's absolute nonsense. It's been shown time and time again that bringing rail to a community does not bring criminals along for the ride. What's going to happen? Some "thug" from the big, bad city will take the route 100 out to the mall, steal some jewelry and then go back to the station and wait for the southbound train? Not likely.

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