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The Man With The Extra Service Plan

It's another football weekend in Philadelphia, and as usual, the Broad Street Line will be jumping with fans headed down to Lincoln Financial Field.

But this one will look a little different. The sea of green usually created by Eagles fans will instead look more gray and blue - the colors, respectively, of the Army Cadets and Navy Midshipmen. They're here for the Army-Navy Game, scheduled to get underway at the Linc at 2:40 p.m. on Saturday, December 12th.

"We're actually busier for the Army-Navy Game than we are for most Eagles games," said Mark Lashley, Assistant Director of Transportation. "A lot of the people going to the game are staying in Center City, so they're taking public transportation to get to the game."

It's events like this that keep Lashley busy all year long. He's responsible for keeping tabs on anything and everything that requires extra service.

"We look at the figures for expected ticket sales, and also take into account ridership numbers from previous events," Lashley said. "We can basically look at those numbers and figure out what traffic is going to be like coming in and out of the events."

This year, especially the fall, has been particularly eventful. The Phillies playoff run collided not just with Eagles games, but also the starts of the Sixers and Flyers seasons. There were also several major concerts mixed in by the likes of Bruce Springsteen and Pearl Jam to mark the final days of the Spectrum.

Big events like these at the Sports Complex require SEPTA to be prepared to accommodate tens of thousands of additional riders. To meet this need, Sports Express trips are usually added to the Broad Street Line - often 10 or more trains for big games. There is also often extra service on the Market-Frankford Line, which many fans use to connect to the subway.

Lashley says the feedback on event service is mostly positive, although he's always open to making improvements.

"We get feedback, and if we see something that needs to be changed, we'll do it," Lashley said. "That's something we're always looking at."

Mark Lashley, Assistant Director of Transportation, monitors events that require extra service.

Lashley on the job at Fern Rock Transportation Center.