Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Details released about Wilmington transit plans during Pope's visit

Anne Hoffman/Delaware Public Media

Transportation officials want visitors from the south heading to Philadelphia for the Pope’s upcoming visit to take mass transit.

"Do not drive, number one thing. You cannot drive to Philly and get a parking place. This is a planned event for taking transit," said Gene Donaldson, a DelDOT official.


Compared to Philadelphia, the area outside the Wilmington train station has ample parking. In total, there are 5800 parking spaces in and around the Wilmington Train Station.

Most parking spaces are less than half a mile from the train station, which is much more convenient than the parking situation in Philadelphia - where officials estimate visitors will have to walk at least between 3 and 5 miles.

There will be free parking around the Frawley Stadium on the Riverfront, and some DART Route 12 buses will be taking people to the train and picking people up in the evening.

Officials are urging visitors who want to drive use carpools to get to the train. And they should expect be heavy traffic in Wilmington with some road closures.

So far, SEPTA official Jack Lauser said they’ve sold around 4,000 rail tickets into Philadelphia on the Wilmington line for the papal weekend. There are 20,000 tickets available for the whole weekend, and the tickets are staggered into different time blocks for each morning. The last train will leave at 5:30pm from central Philadelphia.   

There are no ticket sales out of Wilmington right now, but there are sales out of Marcus Hook and in Center City, Philadelphia.

Amtrak officials say there will run some extra trains on the weekend of the papal visit and and there are still seats available for those who want to travel to Philadelphia. They’ve leased extra commuter trains from Maryland to accommodate the increased volume.

DelDOT is telling people to download the agency’s free app and tune into its radio station 1380 AM for real time transit updates.