The Union will launch a new transit option later this month for fans in and near Center City to get to games.
Starting with the April 28 game vs. D.C. United, there will be team-run buses from four central venues: Baby Blues BBQ at 34th and Sansom Streets, Brahaus Schmitz at 718 South St., Smith’s Restaurant at 39 S. 19th St., and Xfinity Live in the Sports Complex.
The 52-seat buses, one at each location, will leave two hours before kickoff, and drop passengers off in Lot D, very close to the stadium. Return trips will leave Talen Energy Stadium 20 minutes after the final whistle. When there are postgame promotions such as fireworks, accommodations will be made for fans to not miss them.
(If you’re thinking about buying a ticket for the shuttle from Baby Blues, know that the Penn Relays are that weekend, and will make traffic in the neighborhood a bit difficult. The Union are aware of that, and are planning accordingly.)
The bus rides will cost $15 round-trip. They can be purchased as standalone items or with single-game tickets through the team’s website. Bus tickets will be available only through the team’s website, and only in advance. Sales will close an hour or two before departure.
Because all tickets will be sold through the website, cash purchases on the spot won’t be possible. The bus drivers will have the names of passengers.
The Union are paying to rent the buses from Trolley Works. It isn’t a sponsored deal. (But it’s a safe bet that the team wouldn’t mind it being a sponsored deal down the road.)
“We recognize that it’s important that we provide our Philadelphia fan base options,” chief business officer Tim McDermott told the Inquirer and Daily News on Thursday. “This creates another vehicle, no pun intended, for them to come down to the game.”
Fans will be allowed to bring food on the buses, and will be able to leave possessions on the buses during games. But alcohol will not be allowed.
If the buses prove popular after the first run, McDermott said the team will look at expanding the service. The Xfinity Live stop could prove especially popular, as it’s at the nexus of Interstate 95 and SEPTA’s Broad Street subway line.
“If we fill a bus and we’ve got extra demand, then absolutely we’ll add extra buses to those locations,” McDermott said.
More details are available on the team’s website.
The team’s current free shuttle bus service from the Chester Transportation Center regional rail station will continue.