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erom

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The name suggestion I hear most often in the neighborhood for the Spring Hill stop is "Conway".
 

Massachoicetts

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Is the GLX to Porter going to be a thing within the next few years (~10)?

Im not sure if its pipe dream, or something actually being strongly considered for down the road.
 

Charlie_mta

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Is the GLX to Porter going to be a thing within the next few years (~10)?
Im not sure if its pipe dream, or something actually being strongly considered for down the road.
It's probably more of a pipe dream at this point. It's on everybody's radar, including the MBTA I'm sure, but it's not in any funding proposals, and there's no environmental document (EIS) done for it yet. I'd say in 15-20 years it may be approaching construction, but that's just my gut feeling. BLX to Lynn is a higher priority IMO, because Lynn has no rail rapid transit, whereas the neighborhoods between Union Sq and Porter Sq are, or soon will be, nearby rail transit.
 

F-Line to Dudley

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It's probably more of a pipe dream at this point. It's on everybody's radar, including the MBTA I'm sure, but it's not in any funding proposals, and there's no environmental document (EIS) done for it yet. I'd say in 15-20 years it may be approaching construction, but that's just my gut feeling. BLX to Lynn is a higher priority IMO, because Lynn has no rail rapid transit, whereas the neighborhoods between Union Sq and Porter Sq are, or soon will be, nearby rail transit.
This assumes walking and chewing gum is utterly, hopelessly impossible in similar timespace. In which case we are deeply fucked at a very large number of levels. Like...by the same argument, BLX-Lynn is *impossible* to build because we haven't finished Silver Line Phase III in the heart of the CBD, and CBD > outlying communities.

No...pretty clearly we're going to have to ante up and build a bunch of Really Big Things™ at same/similar time lest our region's economic engine stagnates on its own self-created congestion in 15 years flat. There's no shucking that responsibility.


Union-Porter direct-addresses a large degree of Red Line congestion that's going to prove self-limiting in due time to growth across Cambridge. It radials a fast alternative to reaching Downtown vs. cramming through the Kendall gut where doors-open dwells at literally every station poses an existential threat to retaining reference headways over time. It allows for taking advantage of the much emptier contraflow Red direction for staging big-hub transfers @ Harvard and Central. It's relatively inexpensive to build vs. any other project that achieves equal-or-better amounts of congestion mitigation...making it the ripest of "walk and chew gum" multitasking test cases. And it's already an advocacy plank of S.T.E.P., the most successful local transpo advocacy of the last 25 years at getting results done. That is no starting point to sneeze at. BLX-Lynn in many respects wishes it had its act together as cohesively as S.T.E.P. does; we would've had it open eons ago with that level of organization. Point is: sustaining Greater Boston's growth isn't a single-tasking exercise, no matter what the reluctance of the current political regime is to acknowledging that fact. We either learn quickly to adjust, or time passes our economy by.
 

Arlington

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I want a steady stream of “small” (one or two platform) extensions just so we can keep the talent who managed the GLX in house and engaged

To me that would split Lynn into a sprint to Lynn Center and then come back later for infill.

Might mean doing Porter or California St but not the other

Throw in a “Waters Edge” on the OL (between Wellington and Malden)

Get GLX MVP done.

Figure out how to do Southside OLX in smaller bites
 

Scalziand

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Southside OLX starts with the Needham GLX nibbling away at the end of the Needham CR with +1/mode flips until all that's left are the Roxbury stations. Then blitz the conversion of the remaining stations. I'm not sure how much it's worth to keep the Needham line going for OLX +1's when the Needham line is eventually going away anyway.
 

F-Line to Dudley

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Southside OLX starts with the Needham GLX nibbling away at the end of the Needham CR with +1/mode flips until all that's left are the Roxbury stations. Then blitz the conversion of the remaining stations. I'm not sure how much it's worth to keep the Needham line going for OLX +1's when the Needham line is eventually going away anyway.
Realistic staging:
  1. Build to 128, open 1st installment as New England Biz Ctr. (east-side of 128) or Gould/TV Place (west-side of 128) stub-end. Tail tracks + use of Riverside wye leg @ Cook St. Jct. split with D for triaging equipment.
  2. Truncate CR to Needham Center (furthest you can go while still keeping the layover yard active). Extend GLX to Needham Heights. Respective ends-of-track literally stare across the temp-severed West St. grade crossing at each other.
  3. *Truncate CR to Needham Junction after GLX-Heights is fully operational. Ping augmenting shuttle bus between Junction-Heights. Layover reverts to Hersey-Junction passing siding + the residual Millis tail track that's intact to a little ways past the High Rock St. overpass. The GLX station would be across Chestnut Street in the middle of what's now the wye (future yard + turnback loop), so the old depot can remain in revenue use even after the two wye legs are cut for renovation.
  4. Extend GLX to the finished station + yard. Truncate CR to West Roxbury, using the VFW Pkwy. passing siding as the next temporary mini-layover. Permanently re-route the 59 bus away from the route duplication...swapping it from Chestnut St. to Great Plain Ave. to cover the the loss of Hersey (bus to the GL transfer @ Center >>> native CR frequencies) , and terminating at St. Sebastien's next to 128. Start clearing the ROW hardware through Hersey for rail trail extension across 128 to Millennium Park.
  5. *Permanently end CR service to W. Rox and blitz-upgrade the ROW for OLX.
*Generous amounts of ROW pre-prep during nights/weekends to cut time on the transitions on these steps in particular. Landscaping, utility trenching, fencing, erecting trolley pole bases can all happen between Junction-Center while CR is still running in the daytime as far as Center. So can drainage/embankment work for re-widening the Rozzie-W. Rox ROW to its pre-1958 double-track width, utility conduits, landscaping around the OL Highland + Bellevue stations (which are more likely to be re-centered few feet west to better correspond with the street grid rather than staying put at their current side-street locations). As well as *generous* amounts of advance prep construction by VFW Pkwy. for the storage yard and DC electrical substation where the tracks will only be used for non-revenue yard deadheads. You can probably compress the bustitution interlude between last CR train and first OLX train to less than 2 years by taking optimal advantage of these work windows around existing service.
 
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ra84970

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I want a steady stream of “small” (one or two platform) extensions just so we can keep the talent who managed the GLX in house and engaged

To me that would split Lynn into a sprint to Lynn Center and then come back later for infill.

Might mean doing Porter or California St but not the other

Throw in a “Waters Edge” on the OL (between Wellington and Malden)

Get GLX MVP done.

Figure out how to do Southside OLX in smaller bites
I know there's a lot of reporting about the U.S. having sky high construction costs and I think one of the making factors that i keep on coming back to is this point. No region has a sustained capital program that keeps on building year after year. Paris, London, Tokyo, Seoul never really stop building.

Wish we did the same as well.
 

F-Line to Dudley

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This graphic makes me want a Lake St/East Arlington Station. :)
Lake was a stop on the Lexington Line at the end of Commuter Rail service in 1977...though only as a flag stop and only post-1968. It had dissapeared (along with Arlington Center) for many years in the latter-B&M era to cull the bus overlap. But there was no Alewife rail stop back then, so in that era its walkshed practically did span over the city line into North Cambridge covering all areas closer to there than to the Porter CR stop. Had CR been reinstated here for the 80's instead of mothballing the operating line the proximity of the new Alewife stop would've meant that Lake never ever would've come back on the schedule.

Honestly, there's not much there. 100% single-family homes in a 1/3 mile radius all-around, not real close to Mass Ave. at 1350 ft. and intersecting at a not real happening spot, and Spy Pond + Thorndike Field + Route 2 sharply constraining the outermost walkshed in 3 directions to a pretty narrow overall radius. And no bus routes on it, presently...it's either walk 1350 ft. one direction for the 77/79 @ Mass Ave. or 2500 ft. in the other for the 62/67/76 @ Route 2. And Alewife really isn't a bad walk at all; it's almost visible from Lake crossing when the leaves are off the trees. Maybe you could've justified an infill here back in the '45 plan when East Watertown-Arlington Heights was just going to be a Mattapan High Speed Line interurban shuttle copycat, and have that be the proverbial Butler St. of the line where negligible ridership didn't exert any big cost because the facilities could also be negligible. But as HRT cut-and-cover I doubt you could so much as justify the strips of extra land acquisition cost for widening out a station cavern and egress there with fare revenues that are quite likely going to be worst-on-system for any prepayment stop. It's not like the neighborhood is ever going to be upzoned from what it is; every single-family plot is spoken for, so it is what it is more or less permanently.

How far does one stick one's neck out for a loss leader stop for 'feng sui' spacing purposes when it's got little else driving it? There's maybe a *smidge* of debate to be had here...but I bet there are also still enough NIMBY's in those immediate adjoining single-family homes to quash it pretty quickly at the town level, where they'd obviously be keeping eyes on the bigger prizes @ AC + AH. Since the Minuteman path just gets restored on top of the box tunnel the second structural construction is completed, maybe you just install lighting on the reopened path between Lake and Alewife to make the walk more all-hours friendly. And maybe see if during the great bus reboot--as nearly all of the Route 2 frontage routes vacate Alewife busway for AH terminal instead and gain back lots of flex for targeted re-routes--something load-bearing gets sent down Lake to terminate at AC. One decent-frequency bus probably ends up fully adequate capacity, time, and utilization match for that immediate swath of residential, particularly if it spans somewhere useful in Belmont on the other end (re-shaped 78/67???).
 
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HenryAlan

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No...pretty clearly we're going to have to ante up and build a bunch of Really Big Things™ at same/similar time lest our region's economic engine stagnates on its own self-created congestion in 15 years flat. There's no shucking that responsibility.
And if we can't take that on, then shame on Massachusetts. L.A. and Seattle seem to prove that multiple high impact projects can be at various phases of design and build simultaneously. If they can do it, surely we should be able to do this, too.
 

theSil

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I want a steady stream of “small” (one or two platform) extensions just so we can keep the talent who managed the GLX in house and engaged
I know there's a lot of reporting about the U.S. having sky high construction costs and I think one of the making factors that i keep on coming back to is this point. No region has a sustained capital program that keeps on building year after year. Paris, London, Tokyo, Seoul never really stop building.
I'm not super familiar with how the projects are structured, but it feels like BART does something similar to what @Arlington is describing. BART's added five stations extending three lines over the past five years, with seven more stations planned to come online over the next decade. Most of these fall under the Silicon Valley BART extension project, but not all of them.

Unfortunately, I don't think there's a sustained source of capital funding like you're calling for, but when a transit agency has 20 years of projects planned, I would hope that would help some with retaining talent and provide some continuity.
 

bigeman312

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(paraphrasing) East Arlington isn’t worthwhile as a HRT station due to density, stop spacing, lack of bus connectivity, walkshed, etc
F-Line: Just for comparison sake: how would a potential East Arlington Station compare to Savin Hill Station or Shawmut Station in terms of population density, job density, population within various walksheds, bus connectivity, and stop spacing. To my eye, they seem comparable.
 

F-Line to Dudley

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F-Line: Just for comparison sake: how would a potential East Arlington Station compare to Savin Hill Station or Shawmut Station in terms of population density, job density, population within various walksheds, bus connectivity, and stop spacing. To my eye, they seem comparable.
Density way lower. Everything all around is single-family homes on half-acre plots. *One* condo complex next to Spy Pond. One elementary school. Zero commercial (even the stretch of Mass Ave. closest to Lake is majority residential with few storefronts). And of course there are zero buses on Lake...they're all on Mass Ave. or the MA 2 frontages. Total uniformity...no 'clumps'.

That part of Dorchester is mostly triple-decker/multiple-unit. Way smaller plots. More mixed-use heterogenity. I'd say easily 3x the density...maybe more. When I say Lake St. would be a prepayment-station loss leader...it's by a *significant* margin over the next-worst anywhere else.
 

jbray

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Here's a rather terrible presentation of the 2017 data on the density vs service overlap that supports F-Line. East Arlington is ~50% <7,000 ppsm with the rest being <20,000 with a small pocket of <40,000 (That's not a giant gap at all!). Shawmut is housed in a pocket of <20,000 with swathes of <40,000 on either side (presumably the Dot Ave and Washington St. corridors).
 

F-Line to Dudley

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Here's a rather terrible presentation of the 2017 data on the density vs service overlap that supports F-Line. East Arlington is ~50% <7,000 ppsm with the rest being <20,000 with a small pocket of <40,000 (That's not a giant gap at all!). Shawmut is housed in a pocket of <20,000 with swathes of <40,000 on either side (presumably the Dot Ave and Washington St. corridors).
Yeah...so roughly 3x the density. Plus more trip heterogeneity because there's a modest smattering of businesses around Shawmut and Savin Hill backstopping their all-day demand, while Lake just has the elementary school and a quasi-favorable walkshed to the theater and couple specifically closeby eateries on Mass Ave. Otherwise most people in the neighborhood aren't home in the late-morning/early-afternoon and it gets rather quiet on the side streets, so the peak vs. off-peak splits at the turnstiles are going to be very stark.

Shawmut does 2400+ boardings daily...Savin Hill virtually the same. They'll both end up comfortably topping 2500+ in less than a decade because Ashmont Branch frequencies are sharply increasing via RLT from 11 min. avg. headway today to 6 min. avg. within half-dozen years. Lake St.'s density is a third of that, and the surroundings are almost devoid of mixed-use and are forever-locked on zoning so the off-peaks are going to fall more dramatically off a cliff....but frequencies served would be double because it's on the mainline. Let's be *extremely* generous and say that it maybe it punches above its weight and ekes out 40% of a Shawmut from all that. That's...what...1000/day? *Generous* 1000/day...probably a tad less in real usage.

The lowest-boarding HRT stops right now are no-evening-hours Bowdoin (1500+) and Suffolk Downs (1100+). Bowdoin wouldn't be that low if it were even open all day in its as-is state, but we of course are trying like hell to replace it with something with way grander utility @ Red-Blue'd Charles MGH. SD's environs are about to be upzoned *juuuuuuuust a little bit bigly* by what's going to be built next to it. Green Line prepayment stops are more complicated because of the varied frequency math, but low outlier Science Park (~1050 boardings) is also not going to stay that low any longer when it reopens this winter to doubled-up schedule frequencies and a whole plethora of new trip combos out of Somerville/Medford. You're thus probably looking at an absolute floor of no fewer than 2000 daily riders as justification for adding any new prepayment HRT stops on extensions or infills. Arlington Center and Arlington Heights most definitely swing above that heft because of the mixed-use trip generation and major bus transfers at both stops. Good cases can also be made for a Neponset/Port Norfolk infill in Dorchester on the Braintree Branch, a Wellington-Malden infill on Orange, each/all of the OLX stops to West Roxbury, a BLX-ified Riverworks and/or any additional BLX Revere intermediates if they choose the BRB&L ROW, and HRT-ified Milton + Mattapan all meeting that rather modest target threshold with ample room to spare.

I'm not sure what you could possibly throw at Lake St. to push its utilization to 2000+ daily boardings. Multiple native Lake-trawling crosstown bus routes Belmont-AC after the extension's bus reboot? Some very prominent redev(s) on Mass Ave. clustered awfully close to that one intersection...but something taller and hosting more employees/consumers than anything Arlington has ever in history been known to issue a permit for? A combination of both??? I mean, the upzoning isn't going to come from the tapped-out neighborhood itself to further densify it; you'd have to net some absolutely insane transit shares out of the incumbent suburban residential density to amass 2000 bodies per day to pass through those gates. The whole prospect starts off far too much a low outlier to eke out its threshold.


I think in the end you do this neighborhood enough of a solid just re-drawing one usefully frequent bus route down Lake from Belmont to AC in the great post-extension bus reboot, and leave it there.
 

themissinglink

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How did you make that map?
I used paint.net and traced over a Google Maps screenshot to draw the roads, parks, water, and existing transit, then I added the proposed extensions afterwards. It was pretty easy but time consuming for sure. I've got a bunch more I'm working on at the moment.
 

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