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Old Posted Jul 9, 2012, 10:57 PM
Smuttynose1 Smuttynose1 is offline
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Boston Transportation Thread

This thread should provide an opportunity for everyone to provide updates and discuss transportation developments in the Boston area. For the moment, I'll leave you with this unusual story -- the city was buzzing today with the news that an articulated MBTA bus slammed into a trailer for the Sandra Bullock movie "The Heat" currently filming in Dudley Square in Boston's Roxbury neighborhood. Fifteen people were injured in the crash, though all are expected to survive.


Photo by Eric Esteves



15 injured when MBTA bus crashes into truck

Read more: http://www.wcvb.com/news/local/metro...#ixzz20AY8uPiD
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Old Posted Jul 13, 2012, 4:29 PM
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True cost of Big Dig exceeds $24 billion with interest, officials determine


07/10/2012

By Eric Moskowitz

Read More: http://www.boston.com/metrodesk/2012...n1K/story.html

Quote:
As construction wound down on the Big Dig nearly a decade ago, officials disclosed that the cost of the highway megaproject had escalated to nearly $15 billion. Now, for the first time publicly, state administrators have tallied the full cost of the work -- principal and interest, plus legally obligated transit commitments -- and it is some $10 billion higher.

The highway-tunnel work cost $14.5 billion, with the state using $7 billion in federal aid and borrowing the rest. Add interest and the total figure shouldered by state and federal taxes and tolls will be $21 billion by the time the final bond is paid off in 2038, Dana Levenson, chief financial officer for the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, told a legislative committee Tuesday. The numbers largely confirm the accounting of a 2008 Globe review of hundreds of pages of state documents.

But even that figure does not quite cover it. The state two decades ago agreed to a list of public transit improvements to offset the air pollution and other impacts of the additional traffic the Big Dig would generate and to comply with federal environmental law. Transit work completed so far -- including adding the waterfront Silver Line, modernizing the Blue Line, and extending the commuter rail to Worcester, Middleborough, Plymouth, and Newburyport -- resulted in $1.7 billion in construction costs and $1.6 billion more in interest. And the state has not yet started to pay for one of the most expensive commitments, the $1 billion-plus planned Green Line extension to Somerville and Medford.

The House Committee on Post Audit and Oversight called the hearing to better understand the total cost and its continued effect, limiting the state’s ability to pay for other transportation infrastructure projects and even day-to-day highway and transit operation by gobbling up so much money for debt. The state still owes $9.3 billion in principal and interest on the Big Dig and the completed transit commitments, Levenson said. The numbers required some wrangling. Unlike a homeowner’s mortgage, the project’s borrowing costs sprawl across an array of original and refinanced bonds issued by the former Massachusetts Turnpike Authority, the MBTA, and the Commonwealth itself. And though state officials once believed that the federal government would cover 80 percent or more of the construction, that support was capped as the project cost spiraled.

.....
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Old Posted Aug 3, 2012, 10:01 PM
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The MBTA posted the seventeenth consecutive month of ridership gains with June ridership up 1.5 percent over last year. Additionally, the MBTA announced that for the first time in its history, transit rides surpassed 400 million for the fiscal year ending June 31.

MBTA ridership hits new record
http://bostonglobe.com/metro/2012/07...xAM/story.html
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Old Posted Oct 31, 2012, 8:22 PM
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For the 19th time in 20 months, ridership is up on the MBTA'

Despite Fare Hikes, MBTA Ridership Continues to Grow

If your commute to work has felt extra crowded lately, it’s not just “Stroller Cat” taking up room on the MBTA. According to officials, ridership is on the rise, despite predictions that after implementing a new fare structure riders would start finding other ways to get around Boston.

The MBTA’s latest numbers show that ridership in September 2012 increased by 1.5% over the same time last year, with an average of 1.36 million passenger trips per weekday.'

http://bostinno.com/2012/10/31/mbta-...eptember-2012/
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Old Posted Jan 11, 2014, 6:07 PM
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Take A Ride On The MBTA’s ‘New Indigo Line’ In 2024

Read More: http://www.bostonmagazine.com/news/b...plan-proposal/

PDF Report: http://www.massdot.state.ma.us/Porta..._FY14_FY18.pdf

Quote:
The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) has big plans for the Commonwealth over the next five years, including shortening commutes, bolstering the community, and adding specialized trains to the “Indigo Line,” which ideally, one day, would make stops in Allston, Cambridge, and stretch all the way to the North Shore.

- In a 65-page document, MassDOT Secretary Richard Davey outlined the goals of the agency, which includes projects on the state’s highways and bridges, as well as critical infrastructure changes along the tracks of the MBTA and Commuter Rail system. According to the report, over the next five fiscal years, MassDOT plans on spending roughly $12.4 billion on transit projects across the state.

- Roughly $835 million of that money will be going toward new Red and Orange line cars, which are scheduled to hit the tracks sometime in 2019. Davey said the state is also determined to use that money to fix signals on the MBTA, which are often the cause of serious transportation delays for commuters. An additional $1.3 billion is headed toward the Green Line extension, which will bring the train cars to new parts of Somerville and Medford.

- While those projects are nothing new, one interesting highlight of the report is the suggested addition of Diesel Multiple Unit vehicle services, known as DMUs, to the “new Indigo Line.” In his report, Davey notes that the DMU funding will establish the Indigo Line, using the Fairmount corridor to start. Right now, the Commuter Rail only makes five stops between Readville and South Station along that particular line, cutting through Downtown Boston, South Boston, Roxbury, Dorchester, Mattapan, and Hyde Park.

- If all goes according to plan, in the next 10 years MassDOT would like to roll out their “vision for the MBTA in 2024,” where additional DMU lines would run alongside existing Commuter Rail tracks and make connections to existing stations a lot easier.

- According to a map produced by MassDOT as part of the report, the Indigo Line would expand in the next decade and make loops into Fort Point, near the Convention Center, as well as provide trips to Back Bay, and introduce a connector that could swing into Cambridge before making its way to North Station from Allston. There’s also a proposal to have DMUs travel alongside the Lowell and Rockport Lines, connecting to Boston.

.....
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Old Posted Jan 11, 2014, 6:08 PM
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Old Posted Jan 12, 2014, 3:30 AM
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I grew up outside of Boston and went to college there and to me there are really three major things that need to be addressed with transit in Boston I think.

The rolling stock for the light rail and metro lines are in desperate need of replacement they are old and unreliable. Second the green line is extremely overcrowded and painfully slow outside of the tunnels it should be turned into a subway line or at least separated from streets because the ridership definitely warrants. Third there needs to be a north and south station tunnel rail link for the commuter trains and amtrak.

There are many other things that could be addressed but to me those would be my top three things to be addressed by 2024.
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Old Posted Oct 3, 2015, 1:54 PM
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State wants Green Line extension plan by Thanksgiving
Boston.com | 09.21.15

Quote:
The MBTA expects to soon hire analysts to help officials understand how the costs of the Green Line extension to Somerville and Medford expanded so sharply.

The agency revealed in August that the long-planned project had seen its previous $2 billion price tag increase by as much as $1 billion more, a circumstance dire enough for officials to say scrapping the project is a possibility.

The state plans to bring an auditing firm on board next week to take a thorough look at what went wrong, Secretary of Transportation Stephanie Pollack said Monday.
Quote:
A plan will be in place before the end of the fall, Pollack said, echoing comments from Gov. Charlie Baker last week.

“We ... intend to have the strategy in place by Thanksgiving,” Pollack said. “That doesn’t mean that, for example, if we decided to rebid we would have rebid by Thanksgiving, that means the decision would have been made.”

Map from here
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Old Posted Oct 3, 2015, 5:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M II A II R II K View Post
True cost of Big Dig exceeds $24 billion with interest, officials determine


07/10/2012

By Eric Moskowitz

Read More: http://www.boston.com/metrodesk/2012...n1K/story.html
What a waste of money. I can only imagine what Boston could have achieved with that kind of investment had it been directed toward rail expansion. Could probably have doubled the size of the subway system or electrified the entire commuter rail.
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Old Posted Oct 4, 2015, 2:58 AM
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^The eventual cost is indefensible, but removing that hideous elevated freeway from the center of the historic core of Boston was a vast improvement in terms of urbanity and livability.
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Old Posted Oct 4, 2015, 3:29 AM
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They'd have done much better to just do away with the idea of a highway altogether and opt for a MUCH less costly boulevard in the manner of San Francisco's Embarcadero. It's baffling that, despite all the science and evidence to the contrary, we still insist on building or maintaining urban expressways for the sake of throughput capacity at the cost of billions and billions of taxpayer dollars.

That said, it is true that the simple fact that the highway is no longer the open wound that it once was is a HUGE improvement. It's just an inefficient use of resources.
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Old Posted Oct 4, 2015, 4:07 AM
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^ Exactly.

Seeing stuff like this just makes me so mad because all across NA when we ask for things like better transit or bike infrastructure, we constantly hear "Can't afford it" but obviously it's not a matter of can't but won't. When it comes to auto infrastructure, they find the money.
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Old Posted Oct 4, 2015, 8:04 PM
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Again, the cost of the Big Dig is indefensible. It's been held up as the example of wasteful spending and uncontrolled cost overruns for many, many years now. Yes, it's a travesty that money wasn't spent in a more holistic way. But it's not like Boston doesn't have a very good public transportation system--a dense and interconnected web of heavy rail, light rail, commuter rail, BRT, and buses.
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"I am concerned about the problems of so-called unintended consequences. Who will govern Iraq when Saddam Hussein is removed and what role will the U.S. play in the ensuing civil war that could develop in that country? Will moderate governments in the region who have large Islamic fundamentalist populations be overthrown and replaced by extremists?" --Bernie Sanders to Congress, October 9, 2002
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Old Posted Oct 26, 2015, 12:38 AM
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Report lays out Boston’s transit wish list

Read More: http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/201...vnN/story.html

Website: http://goboston2030.org/en/

Quote:
Boston residents want the city to eliminate fatal traffic crashes, make sure every household is within a 10-minute walk of public transportation, and ensure that MBTA trains and buses arrive on time at least 90 percent of the time, according to a new report released on Friday.

- The city says the report lays out the transportation goals of thousands of Bostonians, and represents the next stage of City Hall’s planning initiative called “Go Boston 2030.” The initiative aims to use feedback from the broadest group of Bostonians possible to develop long-term transportation plans. --- An “unprecedented” number of responses is allowing officials to hear what residents want the city to do before projects are planned, said Gina Fiandaca, the city’s transportation commissioner.

- Friday’s report mentioned some general transportation goals for the city. For example, residents want to improve transit options so that residents from outlying neighborhoods can more easily get around town, without having to use central transit hubs such as Park Street and Downtown Crossing. But the report also suggested specific, numeric goals, such as decreasing the average commute time by 10 percent for all Bostonians. That would drop the current average from 28.8 minutes to 25.9 minutes.

- The report also publicizes some projects that are already underway, such as Vision Zero, a nationwide initiative to eliminate all fatal traffic crashes. The plan also suggests relatively inexpensive improvements, such as repainting streets and placing planters to mark bike lanes on the street. Doing so can help slow drivers in corridors and intersections known for traffic accidents.

Based on data collected over the last year, residents hope that the city will:

■ Lower the default speed limit from 30 miles per hour to 25 miles per hour.

■ Increase the number of train stations that have bus service, shuttle service, and access to car-share or bike-share stations.

■ Reduce the percentage of income that poorer households spend on transportation.

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Old Posted Oct 28, 2015, 12:13 AM
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Beer & Transit Featuring Michael Dukakis | October 2015
TransitMatters
Wednesday, October 28, 2015 from 5:00 PM to 9:30 PM (EDT)
Boston, MA


Event Details

Beer & Transit is our monthly networking event, beer summit, and idea incubator. This month will be our premier event! We paired up with the Boston chapter of the Young Professionals in Transportation to bring you the venerable Michael Dukakis.

Guest Speaker | Michael Dukakis
Distinguished Professor of Political Science, Northeastern University
Governor of Massachusetts (1975-1979, 1983-1991)
1988 Democratic Nominee for President of the United States


Dukakis has teamed up with fellow former Masssachusetts governor Bill Weld to reignite the conversation on the North-South Rail Link. The link has been a long-standing critical project that would link North and South Stations and open the door to a more comprehensive, frequent, RER/S-Bahn/BART/DC Metro-style regional rail network.

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/beer-tr...ts-19091003706
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