Starting in June, SEPTA plans to restore overnight subway service on the weekends, replacing the Night Owl buses with trains every 15 minutes on Friday and Saturday nights (or Saturday and Sunday mornings, really).
The Inquirer reports that the program is an experiment that the transit agency will run from mid-June till Labor Day. The key to keeping it is that people need to use it.
Since 1991, subway service has been halted between midnight and 5 a.m., with Nite Owl buses substituted on those routes. Increasing nightlife and residential activity in Center City prompted SEPTA officials to bring back the subway service.
Back in February, when rumors of all-night service started floating around, we ran a poll asking whether you would use it. Out of more than 600 votes, 86 percent of readers said they would use it at least occasionally, and 30 percent said they’d use it “all the time.”
Unfortunately, the late-night service won’t coincide with the installation of the long-delayed smart-fare payment system that will replace tokens. The plan had been to get those stations rolled out in the middle of this year, but now they’re not scheduled to be fully implemented until early next year.
One day, you will be able to use your credit card to pay for SEPTA. They promise.