SEPTA’s proposed FY23 Capital Budget first to break $1 billion mark

April 26, 2022
The authority will hold two virtual hearings on the $1.16-billion FY23 Capital Budget and $11.4-billion 12-Year Program.

The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) released its proposed Fiscal Year 2023 (FY23) Capital Budget and 12-Year Program – it’s largest ever – last week. The $1.16-billion FY23 Capital Budget will mark the first time the authority has passed the billion-dollar mark in a single year capital budget and the $11.4-billion 12-Year Program represents the largest-ever investment in the system.

SEPTA estimates the funding included in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will deliver an additional $100 million per year to the agency through FY26. Additionally, newly-bondable state funding and federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement (CMAQ) funds flexed to SEPTA from regional leaders form the core of this budget.

While the numbers are significant based on SEPTA’s investment history, they still represent an investment that is between 50 percent and 75 percent of what peer agencies in Chicago, New Jersey, Washington, D.C., and Boston invest in their transit systems.

The FY23 Capital Budget proposal calls for a $273.11 million investment in vehicles, $143.99 million investment in Projects of Significance, $104.89 million investment in communications and signals and $88.69 million investment in stations.

“Investing in transit is an investment in our climate; equitable access to opportunities; public health and safety; and economic strength,” said SEPTA General Manager and CEO Leslie S. Richards. “We are grateful to our elected officials for recognizing this and delivering the capital funding we need to create a transit system that works for everyone.”

The capital budget proposal includes investments in Projects of Significance that SEPTA says will “build towards a Lifestyle Transit Network.” The budget proposal is guided by SEPTA Forward, the authority’s strategic plan, designed to transform the legacy system into one that can be used for any trip. The Projects of Significance include Trolley Modernization, replacement of railcars on the Market-Frankford Line, final design and construction of the King of Prussia Rail project, facilities and transit prioritization improvements under Bus Revolution, replacements of the regional rail fleet, wayfinding improvements, State of Good Repair work and Accessibility for All, which will provide ADA accessibility at 21 rail transit and 20 regional rail stations during the next 12 years.

There will be two virtual public hearings about the budget, with sessions on May 23 at 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. The SEPTA Board will consider the proposal at its June meeting. If approved, it will go into effect with the start of Fiscal Year 2023 on July 1.

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