1. RUR, and TransitMatters' advocacy therein. What a huge victory for the advocacy to have successfully slapped back Baker/Pollack's transparent sandbagging of the Rail Vision. We've got a long way to go, but that project could have died outright in 2019 and they successfully bullied the Admin. into keeping on it. Huge win...huge.
2. GLT. With special distinction to the T's sell job of the enhancements, taking a widely varied platter of quasi-related ops stuff very arcane in nature--things usually a total snoozer to public & pols--then coaching it in terms of meaningful service enhancements that everyone was able to readily get behind. 2019 was the year they sharpened their PR tactics for conveying the importance of "nonsexy" improvements. That's a vital missing link they haven't been able to convey so forcefully before, and it opens up so many possibilities for selling system reinvestment. In '20 they've even been able to play this same template to public kudos on truly obscure touches like Franklin Line double-tracking being an exclusive zero-out of the line's OTP deficit (despite that not teeing up any imminent service increases). Starting to get real good at cutting right to the chase on that self-promo.
3. Red-Blue for showing some renewed pulse for the first time in years. Distinction for the advocates calling BS on the state's sandbagged last estimates and pinning them back to the table. Bald-faced lies are getting checked more regularly and thoroughly than ever before.
I can't abide by NSRL on this year's list with that depressingly Baker-sandbagged proposal and nonsensical routing logic. Congress St. somehow ending up "preferred" Alt. but requiring you to duplicate-build the CA/T Alt. at twice the cost to different/split northside terminals if you want/need 4 thru tracks is the stuff of head-asplodin' incredulity. And the advocacy has been hurt by the likes of Dukakis/Salvucci ranting like doddering old fools into every open mic about "ONE MILE GAP" to complete confusion-sowing about service levels and unintentional undermining of better-organized advocates like TransitMatters. The people in charge have shown enough of their true colors that I think we'll be taking a breather from this one for a few years to clear the air and await some less-clueless turnover on Beacon Hill. TransitMatters seems to be leaning that way, retrenching to prioritize the service-side implementation of RUR as the most-logical 'show-me' for eventually reintroducing NSRL boiled down to its "It's the frequencies, stupid!" essence and cutting out the blabbermouths pushing their self-defeating agendas. Deep future-wise I think this thing has still got legs for getting done right--in part because the public advocacy has shown its resilience to adapt after getting knived--, but no question 2019 was a downright brutal no-good year for NSRL politics at its worst.