Alright, Doylestown, you’re gonna have to come through for me here. Your town is so quaint and pretty, so I need this station to live up to that standard. Do you think you can do that for me?
The entrance to Doylestown from South Clinton Street (or South Clinton Avenue, as SEPTA says on their website, because they can’t seem to do anything right) is fairly unassuming: at first glance, you see a platform, a few bike racks, and a 169-space parking lot ($1 a day, free on weekends, one sign says no overnight parking ever while the others seem okay with it). But what’s that building in the distance…?
Ah, I love Doylestown’s station building. Beneath its awnings, it shelters some benches, some wastebaskets, and a convenient ATM (maybe one day a Key fare machine, eh, SEPTA?). Inside its walls made of stone, there’s the typical SEPTA building that’s only open during the morning rush (it looked fairly nice from what I could see), but there’s also a really cute sewing store that’s open generally midday, every day except Monday! I wouldn’t expect anything less specific and unique from Doylestown.
Most of the platform amenities are concentrated around the building, too. You’ve got a bunch of wastebaskets, a useless LED screen, train information, some newspaper boxes, and one bench. That makes for a total of two sheltered benches, with one more out in the open. I guess the two steps down to the platform proper allow for makeshift seating, too, but I can only imagine the crowd of people huddled under the building when it rains.
Darn it, Doylestown, you’re really gonna make your disabled passengers go alllllll the way to the end of the long platform to get the train from the mini-high? Not cool. At least they get to go by the outdoor seating of The Station Taphouse, which is kind of awesome, but…no, this layout is awful! Aw man, I’m gonna have a really hard time coming up with a score in the end…
Oh right, Doylestown has a bus shelter for its bus connections. Its…weird, weird bus connections. Okay, first we have the Doylestown DART, which is a weird minibus loop thing that I’ll almost certainly have to ride someday. There are also intercity buses from here, including Greyhound service to and from Philly and Scranton (ticket to Philly: $12, plus a $2.50 purchasing fee) and Transbridge service to and from NYC and the Lehigh Valley. While the fare to New York is insane ($31.35!) and even worse for the airports around there, you can go anywhere else along the route for just $4, including to places like New Hope and Bethlehem – I’ll definitely be trying this out at some point. The 55, however, does not directly serve the station.
Ridership: It’s fairly low, at 358 riders per day. Maybe it’s because the train feels more indirect from here, since it has to curve out to Lansdale and back in again? But the morning rush drive can take up to 2 hours, while the train is a consistent 90 minutes, so I dunno. I’d also be curious to know what weekend ridership is like, since Doylestown is such a great place to visit for leisure.
Pros: The building really takes the cake here, adding lots of character to the station while also providing some shelter and playing host to a sewing shop. The size of the parking lot is impressive given the downtown location of the station, and there’s a decent amount of bike parking, too. The station is a multimodal hub, with Transbridge being a particularly desirable connection.
Cons: The accessibility situation is the main offender here. While it’s good that the station’s accessible, the ease of getting onto the train for people who need a high-level platform is…low.
Nearby and Noteworthy: Aghhgahaghaah, I LOVE Doylestown! You like history and culture? Doylestown has SO much history and culture. You like restaurants? Doylestown has SO many restaurants. You like cool, unique shops? Doylestown has SO many cool, unique shops! It also has an independent movie theater and a colonial market thing and a CASTLE! Look, I’m just gonna direct you to this map; I adore this town…er, borough.
Final Verdict: 7/10
Ahhhh, I’m sorry! It just has the cute building and the bus connections and it’s in such a lovely town…argh, and I know there’s the accessibility issue, but that’s the one major problem here, and, I mean, at least the station is accessible, right? Hey, Thorndale got a 5, and Doylestown doesn’t have nearly as many problems as that station! Okay, I feel a little more content now that I’ve thought that comparison through.
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