Philly PHLASH Has Returned And Is Here To Stay

New funding structure rejuvenates bus loop with an extended schedule, new vehicles, a new stop and more

May 19, 2014, 11:52 ET from Independence Visitor Center Corporation

PHILADELPHIA, May 19, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Having just wrapped up its first week of the 2014 season, the Philly PHLASH, a transit loop connecting visitors and locals alike to key sights and attractions for only $2 per ride, has returned to Center City through December and is now funded for years to come.

With an average of 250,000 riders per season since the service started in 1994 under former governor Edward G. Rendell, the 2014 PHLASH season marked twenty years of operation with its return on May 9 with a new look and added conveniences including an extended schedule, new modern vehicles, inexpensive pricing and more.

How is PHLASH possible? In its third year under the management of the Independence Visitor Center Corporation (IVCC), PHLASH is allotted financial support this year and into the future due to approval of the State Transportation Bill.

"The IVCC is extremely pleased to have worked with State legislatures and the IVCC Board of Directors to secure funding for the PHLASH. We are excited to launch service this year and look forward to the future of the bus loop used by so many," said James J. Cuorato, President & CEO at the IVCC. "I must thank our Vice Chairman of the IVCC Board of Directors, Tom Caramanico, for his efforts at the forefront of the PHLASH initiative and Meryl Levitz for the extensive marketing support of Visit Philadelphia™."

How often does the PHLASH run? PHLASH arrives at each stop every 15 minutes between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. with the last pick up time marked at each stop along the route. The purple bus runs 7 days a week now through Labor Day and on weekends only (Friday-Sunday) starting September 5 through December 28.

Where does the PHLASH stop? It stops at 20 locations, mostly along Market Street and the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.  A new stop is now located at 3rd and Market Streets connecting the Waterfront and Historic Districts. A transfer is available at 25th Street and Fairmount Avenue in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art Perelman Building (Stop No. 9) for riders seeking to visit the Please Touch Museum and Philadelphia Zoo. For a full route map, click here.

What are the new vehicles like? The IVCC is excited to have brought on Krapf's Coaches to operate the purple bus loop for the first time. The new PHLASH fleet is made up of seven New Flyer MiDi® buses. Each bus seats up to 32 passengers with large windows providing more natural light and surrounding views of Center City. The buses have low floor clearance making them easy to enter, especially when carrying large items on board such as shopping bags, strollers, etc. The buses are air conditioned, ADA compliant, made in the USA and use the latest in clean diesel technology.

How much does it cost to ride? At $2 per ride or $5 all-day, it's a great deal. PHLASH continues to be the most inexpensive and easy connection to key destinations in Center City. SEPTA pass holders ride free as well as children under 4 and seniors. Furthermore, convenient Park & Ride locations sponsored by the Philadelphia Parking Authority (PPA) offer discounted rate options. Click here for a list of participating PPA parking facilities.

Where can I get tickets? Tickets can be purchased on any PHLASH vehicle with exact change only or in advance at the following locations:

  • Independence Visitor Center, 6th & Market Streets
  • Sister Cities Park Visitor Center, 18th Street & Benjamin Franklin Parkway
  • Fairmount Park Welcome Center, 16th Street & John F. Kennedy Boulevard
  • City Hall Visitor Center, Broad & Market Streets, Room 121
  • Online at

From Memorial Day through Labor Day, VISIT PHILADELPHIA™ will be offering two all-day PHLASH passes with each Philly Overnight Hotel Package booked. The one- or two-night packages include FREE hotel parking and a gift upon check-in. Visitors can use it to book one night or two consecutive nights, seven days a week based on availability.

Partners and supporters: In addition to the support of State legislatures, the Corbett Administration, SEPTA and the IVCC Board of Directors, PHLASH would not be able to operate without the additional contributions from our non-profit and private sector partners including: The Delaware River Waterfront Corporation, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia Zoo, Please Touch Museum, Eastern State Penitentiary, National Museum of American Jewish History, Pennsylvania Convention Center Authority, The Franklin Institute, Reading Terminal Market, Shops at Liberty Place, National Constitution Center, Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau and The Barnes Foundation.

The Philly PHLASH Downtown Loop seasonal transit program is managed by the Independence Visitor Center Corporation (IVCC).  PHLASH vehicle service is provided by Krapf's Coaches. For more information about the PHLASH, visit For information about the IVCC, visit

The Independence Visitor Center Corporation (IVCC) is a Pennsylvania non-profit, 501(c)3 organization which operates in cooperation with the efforts of the National Park Service, Visit Philadelphia™, Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau, the City of Philadelphia and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

The Independence Visitor Center is Independence National Historical Park's and the region's welcome center for people from all over the nation and the world offering visitor amenities including trip planning service, easy onsite ticketing for area attractions, multilingual concierge staff, comprehensive daily listing of area events, attraction displays and regional maps, free, informative historical and orientation films, free wireless Internet access and much more. Follow @PHLVisitorCntr, the Visitor Center's virtual concierge service on Twitter, and like us on Facebook. For more information about the Independence Visitor Center, visit

TWEET: #PhillyPHLASH buses are back! The most inexpensive connection to 20 Center City stops is $2/ride or $5/day. @SEPTA pass holders ride free!

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SOURCE Independence Visitor Center Corporation