Fantasy T maps

vanshnookenraggen

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
May 25, 2006
Messages
6,730
Reaction score
854
You probably don't need that many stations on the Nedham Branch, especially since these folks are going to be seeing a much longer trip once the GL takes over the line.
 

F-Line to Dudley

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2010
Messages
7,845
Reaction score
3,340
You probably don't need that many stations on the Nedham Branch, especially since these folks are going to be seeing a much longer trip once the GL takes over the line.
That's actually fewer than officially proposed. City of Newton wants another spacer before Upper Falls. It's a weakish one that probably won't survive the cut, but they're advocating for it.

Length of trip really is no convenience for what gapped-out hell subsists for a Commuter Rail schedule. Besides Needham's natural travel orientation being more towards Newton, it's all about the frequencies. Multiple studies have already affirmed that.
 

bigeman312

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 19, 2012
Messages
1,666
Reaction score
326
You probably don't need that many stations on the Nedham Branch, especially since these folks are going to be seeing a much longer trip once the GL takes over the line.
I 100% agree. I think it would make sense to extend the Green Line to Needham Heights ASAP, at a Commuter Rail adjacent terminus, with one infill stop at Newton Upper Falls. That way, a cheaper extension gets built, ridership patterns can be further studied, and the next phases can be planned.

With a population of 29,000, a density of 2,300 / square mile, Needham has a lower population than Tewksbury and a lower population density than Reading. The existing four Commuter Rail stations averaged 360 inbound boardings per weekday in 2018. That's less than half the ridership of Dedham Corporate Center or Walpole. That's less than the ridership of East Weymouth, even though the Needham stops had more service.

I'm simply not sold that ridership would warrant many Green Line stops in Needham, as currently constructed. Add a few hundred more transit-oriented housing units in Needham Center and I'd be on board with that extension. For a successful, well-supported, full-fledged Needham Branch of the Green Line with stops in Heights, Center, Junction, etc, I think Needham's population would have to be much closer to 40,000 (which is still less than half of Newton), with a few thousand units worth of transit-oriented development clustered around the proposed stops.
 

Tallguy

Active Member
Joined
May 2, 2018
Messages
290
Reaction score
96
RIP, Hersey station?
Most probably
Although I have crayoned (sic) an "outer belt" running from Worcester Line, along the D branch, down the Needham line to VFW, with new track to the old Dedham ROW, over to Readville. Low ridership, but also low construction costs.....
 

F-Line to Dudley

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2010
Messages
7,845
Reaction score
3,340
RIP, Hersey station?
In any GL scenario, it's assumed that the 59 bus would be rerouted away from its route duplication. Sending it down Great Plain Ave. from Needham Center would end up scooping Hersey.

Junction-Hersey-VFW would also get the Bay Colony paved trail extension into Boston for their landbanking.
 

737900er

New member
Joined
Jun 18, 2021
Messages
15
Reaction score
7
You probably don't need that many stations on the Nedham Branch, especially since these folks are going to be seeing a much longer trip once the GL takes over the line.
With 128 and the Charles so close together there, it's hard to come up with a good solution for stop consolidation.
Maybe put Upper Falls west of Oak Street with a bridge over the river to NEBC? I feel like NEBC is one of the big proponents of the project though.
 

737900er

New member
Joined
Jun 18, 2021
Messages
15
Reaction score
7
Length of trip really is no convenience for what gapped-out hell subsists for a Commuter Rail schedule. Besides Needham's natural travel orientation being more towards Newton, it's all about the frequencies. Multiple studies have already affirmed that.
I wonder what those frequencies would look like. Split the current Riverside frequencies between Riverside and Needham? Run both at 6-8 minute headway and short-turn one of those branches at Kenmore?

I also wonder what ridership would look like to Eliot, Waban, Woodland, and Riverside on Green in a world with RER to Riverside and Newton, and a 128 parking sink in Needham.
 

bigeman312

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 19, 2012
Messages
1,666
Reaction score
326
With 128 and the Charles so close together there, it's hard to come up with a good solution for stop consolidation.
Maybe put Upper Falls west of Oak Street with a bridge over the river to NEBC? I feel like NEBC is one of the big proponents of the project though.
Are you suggesting that the New England Business Center's (I believe now rebranding to Needham Crossing) stakeholders are advocating for the project? Or are you suggesting that would be a high enough ridership location to warrant a stop?

I assume it's the former, which I certainly believe, but I do not buy the latter being true at this point in time. Needham Crossing's biggest name tenants (PTC and TripAdvisor) are a 1.3 mile and a 0.8 mile walk respectively. The area is auto-centric and suburban. There are currently shuttles to/from Newton Highlands that provide quicker access today to the Green Line from these locations than walking to the proposed NEBC stop would provide. A stop at Upper Falls would provide even more improved shuttle access.

The only part of Needham Crossing that would be competitive on foot from the aforementioned proposed Green Line stop would be the northern half of Needham Crossing (north of Highland Ave), which is all low-slung suburban industrial. I do not see this warranting its own stop in a world where there are 100 locations across the Boston area with a larger gap between current service and demand.

So, the best solution would be to have no stop between "Newton Upper Falls" and 128, unless that area gets redeveloped into a walkable, transit-oriented, dense neighborhood.
 

erom

New member
Joined
Oct 25, 2019
Messages
68
Reaction score
109
Why would you not keep orange going down the commuter rail ROW so that orange and green meet at Needham Junction? Since the track already exists, it should be cheap to do, right?
 

The EGE

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 29, 2013
Messages
1,051
Reaction score
955
It's over 3 miles from VFW Parkway to Needham Junction; the major of that is swampland or golf course. Hersey does well as a commuter rail park and ride, but it's surrounded by single-family zoning and is doubtful to pull its weight as a rapid transit station. I suspect that extension past West Roxbury or VFW Parkway would not work well on cost-effectiveness - you're running a lot of miles nearly empty, and the GL serves all the major destinations that the OL does.
 

Tysons2

New member
Joined
Apr 4, 2018
Messages
8
Reaction score
0
Why would you not keep orange going down the commuter rail ROW so that orange and green meet at Needham Junction? Since the track already exists, it should be cheap to do, right?
Because there isn't enough ridership in Needham to support it. It also may not end up being that cheap to add a second track and third rail through Cutler Park if environmentalists start suing. There are also more convenient park and ride locations in the areas to the North and South of a potential 128 infill stop, so it isn't likely to generate sufficient new ridership either. Even if the town turned Needham Golf Club into a Northland-style development (not gonna happen), it would be tough to justify.

If West Roxbury manages to torpedo the full OL extension in favor of a diesel shuttle service with transfer across a Robert Street ped-bridge to OL at Roslindale Village, then maybe Hersey holds on? But in all likelihood the bike trail folks will still get their extension into Boston by arguing they are taking toxic diesel fumes out of the park. The neighborhoods currently served by Hersey will have a bus connection to Needham Center GL via Great Plain Ave. No one is going to fight for the people commuting from Roxbury to Needham, they need to hope the Better Bus Project improves access to Brookline Village.
 

Top