SEPTA Route 104
SEPTA Bus Route 104 currently operates between Upper Darby's 69th Street Transportation Center and the North Campus of West Chester University in West Chester, Pennsylvania. Route 104 initially was a streetcar line which operated parallel to the West Chester Pike (PA Route 3) and was operated by the Philadelphia Suburban Transportation Company (a.k.a. "Red Arrow Lines").
Route 104 was established in 1895, by the newly established Philadelphia and West Chester Traction Company. In 1936, the P&W went bankrupt and was reorganized as the Philadelphia Suburban Transit Company taking the line with it.
In 1954, rail service was cut back to the Westgate Hills section of Haverford Township in order to allow the Pennsylvania Department of Highways (now PennDOT) to expand the highway into its current configuration. By 1958, all rail service on the West Chester Pike corridor was replaced by bus service.
For many years, bus service operated along the entire length of West Chester Pike between 69th Street Transportation Center and the terminus of the Pike, just east of West Chester Borough, where West Chester Pike and Paoli Pike merge to form Gay Street (from the westbound direction) and Market Street (from the eastbound direction). Service operated via Gay Street, New Street, and Market Street, laying over on Market just east of New.
In the late 1990s, selected weekday peak hour short-turn trips were extended from the center of Newtown Square in Delaware County to serve the Newtown Square Corporate Campus just west of the center of town.
In 2002, service was extended to serve West Chester University, eliminating a 10- to 15-minute walk not just for college students, but also for residents of the borough's south end neighborhoods. This eliminated the simple loop routing that had been in effect for many years previously.
In addition, a new evening routing operated directly into the Edgmont Square Shopping Center, a rapidly developing retail complex in Edgmont Township, just west of the Edgmont/Newtown township boundary.
Today, Route 104 operates service to West Chester every 10 to 20 minutes during weekday peak hours, 30 minutes during weekday hours and on late Saturday afternoons, and every hour on evenings, most of the day on Saturday, and all day on Sunday. Short-turn trips to Newtown Square provide 10-minute headways to that town during weekday peak hours, and 30-minute service levels on Saturdays and Sundays.