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|Type||Commuter rail line|
|Operator(s)||SEPTA Regional Rail|
|Rolling stock||Electric Multiple Units|
|Track gauge||4 ft 8 1⁄2 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge|
The Warminster Line is a route of the SEPTA Regional Rail commuter rail. It serves stations between its namesake town, Warminster, and Center City, Philadelphia. Half of the route is shared by other lines, including the Lansdale/Doylestown Line, West Trenton Line, Fox Chase Line, Chestnut Hill East Line, and Manayunk/Norristown Line.
The Warminster Line uses the SEPTA Main Line between Center City and Glenside, where it branches off onto its own line to Hatboro and Warminster. The tracks continue past Warminster to Ivyland and eventually to New Hope, where the New Hope & Ivyland Railroad runs heritage excursion trains.
The Warminster Line becomes a single-track line just north of Ardsley, but was once double-tracked as far north as Roslyn, the original northbound track being removed in 2010. A passing siding exists north of Willow Grove.
The North Pennsylvania Railroad formed the North East Pennsylvania Railroad in 1870 to construct a branch from its line at Abington (as Glenside was then known) to Hatboro. The line opened on December 18, 1872. The line was further extended to Hartsville on November 9, 1874. The Philadelphia and Reading Railroad, forerunner of the Reading Company, leased the parent North Pennsylvania Railroad in 1879, gaining control of the line. It extended the line to its final terminus at New Hope on April 29, 1891. The Reading electrified the line, which it called the New Hope Branch, as far as Hatboro on July 26, 1931.
In 1952, all passenger service ceased north of Hatboro to New Hope, with every station except Rushland, Wycombe, Lahaska and New Hope being demolished in 1954. Between 1952 and 1966, only freight trains traveled north of Hatboro to serve customers in Warminster, Ivyland, Rushland, Buckingham and New Hope. In 1966, the New Hope & Ivyland Railroad (NHIR) was launched and purchased 16 miles of track from Ivyland to New Hope. After 1966, Ivyland served as a freight interchange between RDG and NHIR and the RDG relabeled their remaining ownership of the line as the Warminster Branch. Not only did they transport freight, but also run scenic heritage excursions, originally from New Hope to Buckingham, but has been cutback to Lahaska in the 1980s. However, passenger service between Warminster and Hatboro was still inactive.
In 1971, RDG filed for bankruptcy after a variety of misfortunes; among them are increased use of trucks and a dwindling economy. The court issued a bankruptcy protection so RDG can still operate. On July 29, 1974, passenger service was reinstated after RDG completed an extension of the electrification from Hatboro (the original electrified terminus) to Warminster. Willow Grove and Warminster stations were also rebuilt in the same year. By that time, executives of RDG didn't see their debt becoming any better. Less than two years later, RDG's rolling stock, right-of-ways, interests and stock were in the hands of Conrail, also known as the Consolidated Rail Corporation, which launched operations on April 1, 1976. In 1983, SEPTA took control of the Warminster Branch.
Beginning in 1984 the route was designated R2 Warminster as part of SEPTA's diametrical reorganization of its lines. Warminster Line trains operated through the city center to the Wilmington/Newark Line (then Marcus Hook) on the ex-Pennsylvania side of the system. The R-number naming system was dropped on July 25, 2010. As of 2016[update] the majority of Warminster trains continue on to the Airport Line or terminate at 30th Street Station.
The Warminster Line includes the following stations north of the Center City Commuter Connection; stations indicated with italics are closed. Weekday boardings are from FY 2013; data for stations between Temple University and Glenside include all lines serving those stations.:95–96
|C||2.1||Temple University||3,028||Philadelphia||Philadelphia||All SEPTA Regional Rail lines|
|7.3||Fern Rock Transportation Center||825|
|16.2||Willow Grove||472||Upper Moreland|
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