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New Analysis Estimates Benefits of KOP Rail Project

SEPTA’s proposed extension of the Norristown High Speed Line to King of Prussia will result in the addition of 17,000—29,000 new employees in King of Prussia over 20 years, according to new analysis released today by Econsult Solutions, Inc. and the Economy League of Greater Philadelphia. The Connecting KOP study quantifies benefits associated with SEPTA’s King of Prussia Rail Project including job growth, shorter commute times, reduced congestion, and increased development.

The Connecting KOP analysis provides a range of estimated impacts based on different alternatives for the rail extension. Notable findings include:

Development stimulated by the introduction of King of Prussia Rail is expected to add four to eight million square feet of new development and $540 million–$946 million to the value of King of Prussia real estate over 20 years.
Transit travel time savings to King of Prussia are projected at 30+ minutes from Center City, 20+ minutes from Norristown, and 10+ minutes from Upper Darby.
Less-congested routes as a result of the introduction of a rail transit option to King of Prussia will save drivers 1.7 million–2.1 million hours per year.
The estimated total project cost of $1.0 billion to $1.2 billion is anticipated to generate between $1.1 and $1.3 billion in economic activity within the five-county region of southeastern Pennsylvania.
Construction spending is estimated to generate between $19.7 million and $22.1 million in income tax, sales tax, and business tax revenues in Pennsylvania.

“The region still lacks a reliable and direct transit connection between Philadelphia and King of Prussia—the largest job center in the region outside of the city,” said Elizabeth Smith, Manager of Long Range Planner at SEPTA . “The analysis conducted by the Economy League and Econsult helps illustrate the widespread impact that this investment in our region’s infrastructure would have.”

The analysis is being released at a World Class Infrastructure Forum convened by the Economy League at the Sheraton Valley Forge on December 3rd from 8:00-10:00am. The forum will include an overview of the study findings as well as a panel discussion by civic and business leaders including Chris Giangrasso, Senior Vice President, HR, Communications and Site Services, Arkema, Inc.; Robert Hart, General Manager, King of Prussia Mall, Simon Property Group; Crandall Jones, Municipal Administrator, Municipality of Norristown; and Justin Schor, Principal, Wells & Associates.

“Public transportation investments around the country have been shown to stimulate a variety of economic benefits, and the proposed King of Prussia Rail Project is no exception,” said President and Principal of Econsult Solutions Richard Voith. “Beyond the immediate impact of construction spending, this investment will help shape development patterns in the region and support economic growth over the long run.”

“Advancing a project of the scale of King of Prussia Rail will require sustained dialogue and collaboration within the business and civic communities,” said Economy League Executive Director Steven T. Wray. “We hope the analysis presented in this report contributes to productive conversation about what King of Prussia Rail can mean for Greater Philadelphia, and—more importantly—the people who live and work there.”

The Connecting KOP analysis is available here.

 

About the Economy League of Greater Philadelphia
The Economy League of Greater Philadelphia brings together leaders and organizations across all sectors to address the most challenging issues facing the Greater Philadelphia region. Built on our historic foundation of independent, high-quality analysis and practical insight, we spark new ideas, develop strategies, and galvanize action to make Greater Philadelphia globally competitive.  For more information, visit www.economyleague.org.

About World Class Greater Philadelphia
The Economy League’s World Class Greater Philadelphia agenda is focused on improving education and talent development outcomes in our region, boosting business growth and making our infrastructure more effective and reliable. The World Class agenda was developed with input from more than 1,700 regional business, nonprofit, government, labor, and community leaders from across Greater Philadelphia.

About Econsult Solutions, Inc.
Econsult Solutions Inc. provides insights into economic problems, policy questions, and strategic thinking. Our work focuses on providing customized economic expert services in Real Estate, Transportation, Economic Development, and Public Policy and Finance. In addition, we provide Litigation Support services in over 40 industries, as well as customized Solutions to a variety of clients.

 

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