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The Roosevelt Boulevard Subway: A Potential Game-Changer for Bucks County

The Bucks County Government must step up and demonstrate its support for the Roosevelt Boulevard Subway by passing a resolution.

The Roosevelt Boulevard Subway has been a topic of discussion for years, with many Bucks County residents wondering if it will ever come to fruition. The recent passage of a resolution by the Philadelphia City Council to conduct further research on the project is a significant development. It is essential to explore all possible options to improve the region’s transportation infrastructure, and the Roosevelt Boulevard Subway could be a game-changer for both Philadelphia and Bensalem Township. There are two proposed stops in Bensalem Township: one stop is located at Old Lincoln and Roosevelt Boulevard and the other a terminal station near Neshaminy Mall. 

The notion that a subway system would not be advantageous is a common misconception. In fact, numerous suburban regions have implemented metro lines with great success, generating employment opportunities and boosting economic growth. The potential benefits of the Roosevelt Boulevard Subway for Bensalem are vast, and the Washington Metro’s Silver line serves as a compelling example of how to capitalize on such an opportunity. By studying the successes and challenges of the Silver line, Bensalem can gain valuable insights into how to effectively leverage the Roosevelt Boulevard Subway for the benefit of its residents and businesses. 

The implementation of the Silver Line has undoubtedly enhanced accessibility  to Tysons Corner by establishing a direct link to the nation’s capital. It has provided a convenient and effective means of commuting for employees, residents, and visitors alike. As a result, traffic congestion on the roads has been significantly reduced, allowing for a smoother and more streamlined transportation experience. 

In today’s competitive business landscape, it’s crucial to identify locations that offer strategic advantages for companies. Bensalem, a town located just outside of Philadelphia, could be the perfect spot for businesses looking to tap into the city’s talented workforce while avoiding the congestion and high costs associated with urban living. By establishing Bensalem as a hub for reverse commuting, companies can attract top talent from Philadelphia and beyond, while also benefiting from the town’s favorable business climate. With its prime location and ample resources, Bensalem has the potential to become a thriving business center. 

The potential for increased business and investment in Bensalem is promising, as evidenced by the success of the Silver Line and development in Tysons Corner. Improved accessibility and infrastructure can have a significant impact on economic growth and development, and Bensalem has the potential to follow suit. Tysons Corner has become a prime location for businesses to establish their offices or headquarters, thanks to its strategic proximity to transportation options and the burgeoning population of residents. 

Bensalem is presented with a tremendous opportunity with the two station locations. The Neshaminy stop, in particular, boasts vast acres of parking lot that could be transformed into spaces that foster small business and bolster economic growth. This redevelopment could prove to be a game-changer for the city’s economic vitality. The potential closure of the mall could have significant economic consequences, but there may be a silver lining. It could serve as a catalyst for the redevelopment of the mall into a vibrant lifestyle center with transit-oriented development. This would not only soften the impact of the mall’s closure, but also provide a boost to the local economy. 

The proposed stations would significantly increase the value of homes adjacent to them, providing a substantial benefit to homeowners in the area. The recent analysis conducted by Freddie Mac researchers sheds light on the significant impact of Metro station proximity on housing prices. Living within a mile of a Metro station can cost buyers nearly $9,000 more, as chief economist at Freddie Mac Sam Khater suggests. This highlights the significant impact that proximity to public transportation can have on the housing market.

The correlation between public transportation and property values has been a topic of discussion for years. However, a recent study conducted by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) and the National Association of Realtors (NAR) has provided concrete evidence to support this relationship. The study found that residential properties located within a half-mile of public transit options experienced a median sale price increase of 4-24 percent between 2012 and 2016. This finding highlights the significant impact that public transportation can have on property values and underscores the importance of investing in public transit infrastructure.  

It’s understandable that some may have reservations about the potential negative impact of subway stations on surrounding areas. However, it’s worth noting that the proposed stations would be state-of-the-art Metro-style stations, similar to those found in progressive cities such as Washington D.C., San Francisco, and Seattle. It is imperative that stations are equipped with ample parking space and are strategically located to facilitate easy access to local bus lines. This will not only enhance the convenience of commuters but also promote the use of public transportation, thereby reducing traffic congestion and carbon emissions. 

Bucks County is currently facing a critical juncture that will determine its future economic prospects. The decision to either reject or embrace the construction of a new subway line will have far-reaching consequences for the region. By rejecting the subway, Bucks County risks missing out on significant economic development, job creation, and other opportunities. On the other hand, by partnering with the plan to build a modern subway line, the county can play a pivotal role in transforming the lives of its citizens, particularly those residing in Bensalem. This move will undoubtedly enhance the quality of life for residents and pave the way for a brighter future. The Bucks County Government must step up and demonstrate its support for the Roosevelt Boulevard Subway by passing a resolution.

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Jay Arzu

Jay Arzu

Jay Arzu is a Ph.D. student in City and Regional Planning at the University of Pennsylvania Stuart Weitzman School of Design and the chief marketing officer at Collective Form, interactive community engagement platform for urban design and planning.

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