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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — SEPTA and PATCO announced additional reductions to its services on Thursday, as the coronavirus crisis continues to impact ridership.
Starting Sunday, SEPTA will reduce its Regional Rail service to an “essential service schedule.” Service on most lines will run every two hours. The Airport Line will run every hour. All Regional Rail lines will operate seven days a week, except for the Cynwyd Line, which will operate Monday through Friday.
SEPTA spokesperson Andrew Busch said Regional Rail ridership fell 94% this week. Bus, trolley and subway ridership is down 70%.
“We are pleading with our customers — if you don’t have to ride, please don’t,” said SEPTA General Manager Leslie Richards. “We need to reserve space on our buses, trains and trolleys for those who need to get to essential jobs, or access life-sustaining services.”
For those essential people who must travel during this crisis, riders can use SEPTA’s interactive map, which shows SEPTA lines that connect to essential businesses in the area.
SEPTA buses, subways and trolleys will continue to operate on Saturday schedules until further notice.
Starting Saturday in New Jersey, four PATCO stations will close until further notice: Ashland, Westmont, City Hall, and 12th/13th and Locust Street stations. Riders are also directed to use the Walter Rand Transportation Center entrance at the Broadway Station.
Lindenwold, Woodcrest, Haddonfield, Collingswood, Ferry Avenue, Broadway, 8th and Market, 9th/10th and Locust Street, and 15th/16th & Locust Street stations will remain open, but schedules will be adjusted.
Monday through Friday, midnight to 4 a.m. trains will arrive every hour. From 4 to 5 a.m., they’ll arrive every half-hour. From 5 a.m. to 11:59 p.m., trains will arrive every 20 minutes.
On Saturday, hourly trains will be available between midnight and 5 a.m., and every half-hour throughout the rest of the day. On Sunday, trains will arrive every hour throughout the entire day.
PATCO said the changes intend to slow the spread of COVID-19 and protect riders and employees.