Project Development Click to view Click to view Click to view Click to view DEIS
Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS)
In October 2017, SEPTA and Federal Transit Administration (FTA) released the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for KOP Rail to the public and stakeholders. The DEIS, required by the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), evaluated various alternatives for a new rail connection between the existing Norristown High Speed Line (NHSL) and destinations in King of Prussia. The DEIS included a summary of benefits to the local and regional community as well as potential impacts to the natural, cultural and social environment.
Subs
National Environmental Policy Act of 1969
In October 2017, SEPTA and Federal Transit Administration (FTA) released the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for KOP Rail to the public and stakeholders. The DEIS, required by the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), evaluated various alternatives for a new rail connection between the existing Norristown High Speed Line (NHSL) and destinations in King of Prussia, including documenting potential impacts to the natural, cultural and social environment.

Scoping: Project Scoping sets the stage for the types of alternatives that will be evaluated in the DEIS, which is the first step in the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) process to secure federal funding for construction of the project. Scoping is considered a "formal" step in the environmental review process. During Scoping, the sponsoring agency (in this case, SEPTA and the FTA) determine the purpose and the need for the project in order to identify the types of transportation alternatives that should be considered for evaluation. SEPTA began the Project Scoping phase in the fall of 2012.

Tiered Alternatives Screening: The ability of an alternative to meet the project purpose and need while minimizing environmental impacts is determined by examining a wide range of issues. The process requires us to find the best overall alternative, while striving to balance the benefits and impacts as much as possible. As more data is gathered and design advances, the level of detail and analysis increases. To accommodate this increase, the alternatives analysis is divided into different stages or “tiers.” This tiered evaluation allows SEPTA to either modify or eliminate certain alternatives as the work proceeds.
Screening
Environmental Impact Statement (EIS): An EIS is a written statement containing an assessment of the anticipated effects – both positive and negative – a proposed alternative may have upon the environment (natural, social or cultural). The Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) will be thoroughly analyzed in an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) in order to meet the National Environmental Policy Act requirements for environmental approval. This is a critical step and enables the project to move forward into engineering design and eventual construction.

Draft EIS
  • Identification of Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA)
  • Adopt LPA into regional long range plan
  • View DEIS
Final EIS
  • Summary of public and agency comments and responses
  • Record of Decision
  • Refinement of Financial Plan
  • Application to FTA for New Starts Federal Grant program
Schedule

Tiered Alternatives Screening: The Tiered Screening process, required by the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), was used to evaluate the various alternatives using specific criteria. At each stage of the process, SEPTA offered several opportunities for the public to review the current range of alternatives under consideration and provide feedback. For KOP Rail, three (3) screening tiers were used to ultimately find the best overall alternative. SEPTA’s board adopted the LPA – PECO/PA Turnpike – 1st Ave in January 2018.