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ceo

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How are you going to bring a Porter Square Green Line extension into Porter Square? I don't see where there's room for it anywhere.
 

George_Apley

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How are you going to bring a Porter Square Green Line extension into Porter Square? I don't see where there's room for it anywhere.
It would have to duck under the Fitchburg Line around Beacon Street, or maybe Wilson Square.
 

F-Line to Dudley

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How are you going to bring a Porter Square Green Line extension into Porter Square? I don't see where there's room for it anywhere.
Fitchburg Line's 4-track width. If you view the corridor from any street you'll see the slightly overgrown extra track berths on each side traced by the retaining walls and property fences. It's exactly the same upstream as it is on GLX out to Union. The only obstructions to square south of Beacon St. are:

1) Punching through the Prospect St. retaining wall where Union Sq. station stubs out. That's not hard to underpin.

2) Widening the Washington St. overpass, which was constructed after Track 4 was removed.

3) Demolishing the enclosed walkway that goes under Dane St. overpass on Tracks 3 & 4 to connect the facing buildings on Dane across the street from each other. It might still be active, but it's residue from when both of those buildings were factories and sits on a revokable RR easement. That's couple hundred grand in incidental cost.


Then you do the Porter Station interface:

-- This would entail the GL tracks ducking under Somerville Ave. at the Beacon/Somerville intersection, burrowing sideways through the retaining rail to reach under-road.

-- Then it would drop on an incline and shift quickly back underneath the Fitchburg Line tracks 1 level below the surface in a box tunnel setup, limiting the under-street disruption from no further north than Mossland St. to no further south than where the left-turn lane starts to appear on Som. Ave. for the Beacon intersection. Basically, a potential 400-500 ft. swath where the GL pulls an S-curve under and down before getting back on-alignment.

-- The Green Line tunnel's roof becomes the Fitchburg Line's literal trackbed, with no pricier cut-and-cover required. This construction may allow the Fitchburg tracks to be dropped 3 or 4 more feet to create all necessary vertical clearance for the air rights decking, so 2 birds with one stone.

-- The GL platforms would be accessed by using the commuter rail entrance from the main lobby, and ramping down the equivalent distance as the CR station ramps up. The Red Line tunnel is 100+ feet below ground in deep bore through a thick bedrock seam, so there are zero impacts.

-- Tunnel would continue under the Mass Ave. overpass and stub out there for tail track space. Any future extension of the Green Line would be provisioned by S-curving the tunnel slightly off to the side and portaling up, since the Fitchburg Line is still 4-track width out to Belmont Ctr.


Costs are controlled for the subway by the box tunnel setup under the Fitchburg trackbed, which is way cheaper than traditional cut-and-cover tunneling. C&C burrows underneath both the street and the under-street utility layer. Box tunnel is more like air rights: trench + roof + re-lay Fitchburg tracks on the roof.

They'd likely opt to eliminate the Park St. grade crossing with a road bridge while they're at it. It's not mandatory, but recommended enough for the headways to get it over with.


Little more expensive than the Route 16 extension, far less expensive than any one phase of the currently-funded GLX.
 

George_Apley

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Just wondering; how disruptive would Porter-GLX be to Fitchburg MBCR operations? I'm assuming that service would be suspended outright during the box-tunneling/trackbed lowering.
 

F-Line to Dudley

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Just wondering; how disruptive would Porter-GLX be to Fitchburg MBCR operations? I'm assuming that service would be suspended outright during the box-tunneling/trackbed lowering.
Single-track ops...shift track waaaaaay to one side while half the ROW gets trenched. Then waaaaaay to the other side on the propped up half-roof when the other side is trenched. Small temp portable mini-high platform set up on the other side of the Mass Ave. overpass in the interim, accessible from the existing stairs. For ADA access from the temp platform, grade the eventual Alewife bike path access ramp up along the Passage to India rear lot to the sidewalk and use that. Flip the temp mini-high to the other track when it's time to trench the other half.

I've spent enough time over the years mentally measuring the width of the canyon at my home T station that feasibility shouldn't be a problem. Retaining wall to retaining wall is very wide at the platform area, so there's no way a half-and-half dig + concrete pour is an issue so long as that temp platform can shift by the far-side stairs. Typical construction zone-type mess for a couple of years, but the CR station isn't so busy and the Fitchburg not so schedule-dense that the temp setup wouldn't get by OK for the duration with only incidental risk of dwell-induced delays. And would have no impacts on the Porter lobby, plaza, or bus stops while the main CR level is closed and being ripped up halves at a time. The only change to the interior is that the Charlie gates have to move so Red and some sort of unobstructed path to the Green area grafted onto the doors to the CR level stay fully behind fare control. I imagine that wouldn't be too difficult with the size of the lobby, but I don't have a clear idea of how the gates would have to be rearranged.
 

Scalziand

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Would this also finally get rid of the super narrow island platform at the Porter CR station?
 

F-Line to Dudley

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Would this also finally get rid of the super narrow island platform at the Porter CR station?
That they can do today if they wanted. It pinches at the end because of the need back in 1982 for keeping the old CR platform (still visible as derelict ruins underneath the Somerville Ave. overhang) in-service uninterrupted during station construction. The tapered end is where old and new had to overlap in shared space. Re-spread the tracks onto the old platform berth and you can get a full regulation 800' x 12' uniform width full-high island platform put in.

They don't have a lot of motivation to do that because Porter is ADA compliant as-is and there are so many other Fitchburg stations that are 0% compliant and need upgrades more urgently. Probably would take an Indigo-Waltham route for them to spend the money fixing the Porter pinch and making it a full-high. GLX-Porter might actually end up getting first crack at that platform do-over job since the state seems to have zero interest in running fast/frequent service out to Waltham and the Polaroid Complex @ 128 any time in the foreseeable future.
 

JumboBuc

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Say the Green Line gets extended to Porter. How feasible would it be to extend it a little further along the Fitchburg right-of-way and then pull off south behind the Fresh Pond Mall, skirt along the East side of Fresh Pond, and end in Watertown?
 

vanshnookenraggen

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Not hard but too round-about to make for usable service. Anyone coming from Watertown via bus heads to Harvard or Central. Sending them up to Alewife and Porter wouldn't attract enough ridership.
 

F-Line to Dudley

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Say the Green Line gets extended to Porter. How feasible would it be to extend it a little further along the Fitchburg right-of-way and then pull off south behind the Fresh Pond Mall, skirt along the East side of Fresh Pond, and end in Watertown?
State ownership of the Watertown Branch ROW ends at School St. slightly past Watertown Mall. The section past there to the Square was abandoned much earlier, in 1960, and reverted to private ownership. It's largely intact, however, except for the Lexus dealership that got plopped right on the ROW. Rest of the properties are scuzzy industrial backlots...some of them still with tracks in the back.


East of School St. it's pretty cut-and-dried.
-- Spit the portal out on the south side of the Fitchburg ROW on trajectory for the branch turnout.
-- Landscape the branch. It used to be 2 tracks the entire distance, so to the extent it looks narrow today it's mainly vegetation overgrowth and dirt that got dumped onto the embankments over the years to stabilize them. The section of Watertown Greenway completed behind Watertown Mall is indicative of just how wide this ROW used to be.
-- Drainage work around the Mall and Cambridge Waterworks, which are notorious washout spots.
-- You can attempt to eliminate the Sherman St. grade crossing on the Fitchburg Line but I'm not sure adjacent buildings will allow much in the way of a road bridge, and track bridge won't work all that well for turning out onto the branch. Give it a shot, but if the crossing can't be eliminated it's not the end of the world. Just stick a traffic signal there.
-- Reconfiguration of the New St./Mall driveway grade crossing for safer access. Traffic signal. This would be a station stop. Outdoor, D-style. The GLX prepayment stations end at Porter because they're just not practical out here.
-- Grade crossing elimination of Fresh Pond Pkwy.
-- Pedestrian crossing signal by the Waterworks path. Sort of near where the existing crosswalk is across the Parkway. This can be a station stop.
-- Close the Waterworks driveway grade crossing to regular traffic. Unlockable fence when vehicular access needed. Alter the grade separated Waterworks driveway for bi-directional traffic.
-- Close Clifton St. grade crossing.
-- Traffic signal at Arlington St. grade crossing. This would be a station stop for sure.
-- Close private driveway crossing behind Watertown Mall, tie driveway into Dexter Ave. through adjacent parking lot instead.


Option 1 to the Square: the immediate option:
-- At School St., turn onto Arsenal and run 1 mile as street-running to Watertown Carhouse. Sub-ideal, but Arsenal's a much wider road than Huntington/South Huntington, lower-volume, and only has 3 traffic lights between School and the Square, plus 2 on the river crossing to the carhouse.


Option 2 to the Square: the hard one:
-- Blow up the Lexus dealership. Car dealerships are transient tenants anyway, so odds they'll be there in 20 years to begin with aren't great. That clears the only outright obstruction.
-- Watertown has a master plan to slowly scoop up the industrial and autobody properties lining Arsenal and flip them for more walkable street-facing businesses. As part of this plan they are seeking back-lot easements to re-claim the ROW for a Greenway extension. They are being progressive about this. Unfortunately, with so many private property owners to deal with this is going to be a decades-long process to flip every property.
-- Some state assistance with the property flips would help speed this up. In some cases only eminent domaining of rear parking lots are necessary, with existing structures clear of the ROW. Trace it on Google from School St. to the Square...it's very doable, just very uncertain on the timeframe because of the ownership. (Note: the last block before the Square--Patten St. to Taylor St./Mt. Auburn, is a municipal lot.

Assuming property ownership is secured, then:
-- Grade crossing at School St. tied into the existing Mt. Auburn light.
-- Grade crossing at Irving St. Unless you can do a road bridge without blocking building access. It's borderline; try it but be prepared to concede.
-- Scoop out the filled-in overpass at Patten St. That's really an overpass; they just packed dirt under it.
-- Station stop in the Square. You can reverse directions here for normal service and continue to the carhouse for equipment swaps.


Option 1+2: Street-running until however many decades it takes to re-secure the ROW property, then relocate onto the stitched-together grade separation.


Grand total:
-- 4.5 miles from Porter.
-- Grade crossings at: Sherman (likely), Fresh Pond Mall, pedestrian crossing, Arlington St., School St., Irving St. (maybe)
-- Station stops at: Sherman St. (@ grade crossing, ONLY if grade crossing stays), New St./Fresh Pond Mall (@ grade crossing), Fresh Pond Reservoir (@ ped grade crossing), Huron Ave., Mt. Auburn St., Grove St., Arlington St. (@ grade crossing), Watertown Mall, School St. (@ grade crossing)
-- Street-running stops on Option 1: Beechwood Ave. (@ traffic light), Irving St. (@ traffic light), Watertown Square, Watertown Carhouse.
-- Grade-separated stops on Option 2: Irving St. (@ grade crossing), Watertown Square.
-- Union/Porter branch is fed by the E, so frequencies would stay consistent with a slightly-boosted E and Watertown Carhouse would become the primary car supply for the E.



I wouldn't exactly put this on your calendar anytime soon, but that's how it would break out. And travel time-wise this is a lot better for reaching Watertown than the old street-running A route from the Central Subway. There's a little bit of yearning for the old A Line route because it would put the 57 back on light rail, and this doesn't follow the 57's route. I don't think that's much of a concern because the 71 is a biggie unto itself that needs more capacity and frequency, and this is the 71 analogue that largely replaces its load-bearing function. 57 is #9 on the system in ridership, 71 is #21 at slightly more than half the 57's ridership. But the 57 skews extremely heavy to Brighton trips and drops off a cliff past Oak Sq. That's why A Line restoration advocacy shortened its bench to Oak-first. 71 is mostly the pan-West Cambridge/East Watertown corridor, and this would draw most of the ridership onto light rail and relegate the 71 to the "Mt. Auburn bus".

Take the grade separation and run with it, and don't kvetch about the 57 or Crazy Transit Pitches therein trying to throw $2B to subway across Brighton. Nothing's stopping a street-running restoration to Oak, and you can figure out the Watertown-Oak connecting leg and remaining 25% of that demand later. Maybe the lightened 71--which should be extended to Newton Corner anyway--just gets extended again to wrap around to Oak. Maybe something else does. But whither 57 plays no role in this build.
 

F-Line to Dudley

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Not hard but too round-about to make for usable service. Anyone coming from Watertown via bus heads to Harvard or Central. Sending them up to Alewife and Porter wouldn't attract enough ridership.
Sure it would. The 71 draws more daily riders than SL2 + Silver Line Way short-turns on the Transitway. And takes over a half-hour at peak to get between Harvard and the Square and regularly gets stuck in traffic. Single fare out of Harvard, 1 stop in the reverse-commute direction, and transfer to Green Line beats the bus every time, with 1-1/2 times the frequencies. Why wouldn't the north end of the E's run end up clocking in at about 70-75% of the E branch's dedicated ridership with those advantages coupled with the exploding growth in North Cambridge and East Watertown. For one, you currently cannot get to Watertown at all from North Cambridge without slogging it to Harvard and getting on the bus. Watertown may as well be on the Moon for anyone in Somerville or anywhere on the 77.

You can't compare it with Brighton. Brighton's population center has always had easy one-seat access to Watertown. It's a mature transit route. Everything north, northwest, and northeast of Harvard never has. And there are a fucklot of people who live there. Many of them [*North Cantabrigian raises hand*] need to get to the Mall sometimes and hate the senselessness of having to drive such a short crow-flies distance in the car or walk an hour on Nonantum Rd. within inches of Formula One-speeding traffic to get there because there's no direct way. Watch the Minuteman-level utilization of the Greenway when it reaches Alewife on this ROW. There's a commuter market here that'll saturate whatever mode you feed it, including sneakers and bikes, because it opens up a high-demand direct route that has never ever existed before.

This route isn't in competition with the 57. It's faster from downtown because of the grade separation, and taps a whole new audience by making the impossible possible. Brighton needs a separate solution. It doesn't need to pooh-pooh Cambridge's/Somerville's/CBD's good transit solution to Watertown.
 

cybah

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Sure it would.

Gee sounds almost like the Yellow Line (or a section of it) "crazy transit pitches" post I made earlier this week.

I created a busway from Alewife to Watertown Sq using a exiting bike path and abandoned ROW. (along with an entire BRT line to Wonderland via RBP/MVP/MA-16)

And I agree, as a former North Cambridge resident, I often wanted to go to Watertown (think the yummy diner) and it's a pain in traffic. By putting a busway in, it would lower the headway (even though it's further away) because it wouldn't have to contend with traffic. (if done right)
 

F-Line to Dudley

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Gee sounds almost like the Yellow Line (or a section of it) "crazy transit pitches" post I made earlier this week.

I created a busway from Alewife to Watertown Sq using a exiting bike path and abandoned ROW. (along with an entire BRT line to Wonderland via RBP/MVP/MA-16)

And I agree, as a former North Cambridge resident, I often wanted to go to Watertown (think the yummy diner) and it's a pain in traffic. By putting a busway in, it would lower the headway (even though it's further away) because it wouldn't have to contend with traffic. (if done right)
Busway on the H2O Branch might have some environmental issues. When the state bought the branch from Pan Am 2-1/2 years ago, the portion of ROW that goes through the Waterworks property--and only that portion--was conferred to City of Cambridge ownership. Believe that was some sort of paper trick for streamlining continued funding of the city's soil runoff mitigation efforts ringing the whole perimeter of the reservoir. It is a fully landbanked RR on their property subject to the 'interim use' provisions of that federal law, but that does mean potential fly in the ointment is City of Cambridge's say in future use, and the environmental impact that future use would have on the reservoir.

Right now the Greenway path is only scheduled to hook in to the existing reservoir path on the Huron side. Then all bikes and walkers get directed onto the pre-existing reservoir and parkway side paths the rest of the way (makes sense...why build it twice). The ROW under the driveway overpass all the way through their front lawn to the Parkway grade crossing won't be used for anything.

All this environmental mitigation they're been doing the last 10 years around the perimeter of the reservoir is for runoff mitigation for the water supply. The front lawn job done 12 or so years ago was for Parkway runoff, the extensive Huron hillside job done about 3 years ago was for Huron runoff, and before that they buffered the golf course for that fertilizer runoff.

So they are going to have big problems with any re-use of the ROW that induces runoff risk. And busway would most definitely do that by putting road salt and oil slicks halfway closer to the reservoir than the Parkway and within their catchment area. They likely wouldn't have such qualms about light rail because railbed doesn't have to be treated, alternate materials can be substituted for ties if there's any risk with creosote-soaked wood, and electric traction isn't carrying fuel. Since there's no way to skip the Waterworks and inject a bus down the steep hillsides on the Huron and Mt. Auburn overpasses, nearest place to get on for H2O Sq. is Clifton St., which is ham-fisted, or Arlington St., which is more than halfway there.

So...unfortunately, not a busway in the making. That DOESN'T mean there isn't a crying need for an Alewife-Watertown bus, or that it wouldn't be silly-easy to implement one. The Parkway may not be such a swell ride, but it's also not got any traffic signal coordination whatsoever like most of the river roads. Huron-Greenough is improvable with a re-time. Then you have the dragstrip that is Greenough and the 4-lane portion of Arsenal serving up a fast trip. OR (and this may be better)...turn this bus out onto Huron, then take Grove/Arlington to reach Arsenal and scoop up some neighborhood density. There's a bit of a N-S route gap between the 72, 73, 71, and 70 begging to be joined together, and Grove/Arlington is the densest and most centrally-located thru route for doing it.

It's not BRT because there isn't an available injection point for the busway, but as Yellow Line infills go that's screamingly obvious. Base the schedule on padding for the slog around the parkway, where very few stops are going to be needed, and then Huron + Grove/Arlington + Arsenal is a fairly reliable schedule. It's fast in the car...I'd just kill not to have to do that in the car every single time.
 

cybah

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Busway on the H2O Branch might have some environmental issues. <snip> <snip>

It's not BRT because there isn't an available injection point for the busway, but as Yellow Line infills go that's screamingly obvious. Base the schedule on padding for the slog around the parkway, where very few stops are going to be needed, and then Huron + Grove/Arlington + Arsenal is a fairly reliable schedule. It's fast in the car...I'd just kill not to have to do that in the car every single time.
Yeah I agree. My transit pitch was kinda crazy anyways (more because we'd need to re-use a rail trail and those are pretty hard to do). I did not take in considering environmental concerns into my design, as it's a off the cuff proposal.

If others want to see my proposed "yellow line" what F Line and I are talking about, the link can be found here: http://bos.tn/7Q6Zo

But as far as Fresh Pond, I did have a street alternative (which is just to use Fresh pond Parkway which is adjacent to the ROW along the pond). I just didn't make it the recommended path because of traffic along that road.

At some point, I had a few more ideas regarding the Yellow line and spokes to branch off. Maybe I'll re-design the busway to avoid the water , but still use the ROW behind Star Market to Arsenal Street. (from Huron Ave @ Aberdeen to Arsenal @ School)

(and yes waay off Urban Ring topic now, but it was applicable to what F Line was talking about)
 

Deetroyt

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Maybe this belongs in crazy transit pitches thread, but I was looking at a map of Charlestown and noticed that in between Community College and Sullivan Square, there is a rail spur breaking off under I93 at about D street, that then curves around and runs parallel to Medford St. If UR was ever built as light rail, would it be viable or even worth it to have a spur running along this side of Charlestown? It seems to me that for half of the neighborhood, this would be better transit access than walking to the orange line, especially depending on the destination. I have no idea if this would make any sense from an ops standpoint, or if it would even be possible or wanted by the neighborhood. In fact now that I think about it, maybe that rail spur is actively used for freight? Am I way off target here or would this be useful idea if UR were ever built?
 

bigeman312

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I would assume the impediment is the Mystic River. To convert this ROW to transit means either creating a brand new Mystic River crossing at a particularly wide point (cost prohibitive) or to dead end in Charlestown (ridership killing). Rather, they've proposed to convert one lane of Route 16's crossing of the Malden River to BRT, which seems better from a cost-benefit standpoint.

Somewhat related, but not really:

The Wellington <--> Airport section of BRT 1 from the Urban Ring is becoming so high in terms of cost-benefit with the Silver Line Gateway project, that it should be completed as a stand alone project once SLG opens next year.

It could easily be branded as SL7, using the Silver Line Gateway ROW from Airport to Chelsea/Mystic Mall, and street-running (Everett Ave and Revere Beach Parkway) to Wellington while ROW determination/acquisition/construction is underway.
 

Deetroyt

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Yeah I was thinking of dead ending near Charlestown Community Center, and then heading back towards Lechmere or onto Kendall. I guess dead ending there would be pretty pointless.
 

bigeman312

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Not pointless. But if efforts were focused on going east-west in the Wellington area, where through-riders between East Boston, Chelsea, Everett, Medford, and Somerville would all be traveling (as opposed to only people heading to/from that part of Charlestown), you get more bang for your buck.
 

F-Line to Dudley

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I don't really see a UR tie-in here. The Ring is all about moving transfer-to-transfer without having to plow into downtown overcongestion. The only spur route being considered in the official plan is Harvard, which is extremely critical but doesn't fit contiguously onto the main line. And, in some renders, a Dudley-JFK spur (although that one is a lot more dubious and reflective of uncertainty about traffic on the Dudley-Broadway/Andrew-Southie leg of the main Ring). But linking existing transfers, and a handful of high-demand stops in between those transfers, is all it's supposed to do. By ringing downtown it's supposed to make last-mile trips on intersecting routes like a local bus shorter and easier. Vast majority of riders are going to use it as part of a two-or-more seat trip involving other modes. It's generally not catering to one-seat riders beyond more than small 'arcs' on the route (Chelsea-Everett-Sullivan, for instance).

Start making the UR this catch-all dumping ground for infinite hyper-local branching so that every constituency gets its one-seat ride to their neighborhood's local stops and the mission creep steals focus from the job it's supposed to do. The UR's efficiency at staging fast transfers starts suffering the more its primary service patterns get muddled by shivving in another proverbial B Line to some new neighborhood. Even to the extent that it's integrated into a greater Green Line system, it's going to be a reimagining (per that gigantic thread we have) of how Green's traffic skews more than an opportunity to cram in equal proportions of more of the same. The UR isn't supposed to be absorbing the functions of local bus routes. It's supposed to enable better and more efficient local bus routes on those last-mile transfers. And in turn puts onus on investing in substantial Yellow Line improvements out of those transfer spots.


Sullivan is already one of the transfer centerpieces of the UR trunk. Spurring it so it hits a duplicate Orange transfer at CC packed with neighborhood stops isn't a value-added; it's a distraction starts bogging it down and imbalancing it. Pose this question in terms of what great things you can do with the bus terminal and the load balancing of Charlestown routes if the UR hits that Sullivan transfer rather than inventing new ways to contort the UR into serving new masters. What does that mega-transfer stop enable in terms of faster, more frequent, less-crowded, more reliable, more diversely-arrayed Yellow Line schedules in Charlestown?
 

F-Line to Dudley

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Maybe this belongs in crazy transit pitches thread, but I was looking at a map of Charlestown and noticed that in between Community College and Sullivan Square, there is a rail spur breaking off under I93 at about D street, that then curves around and runs parallel to Medford St. If UR was ever built as light rail, would it be viable or even worth it to have a spur running along this side of Charlestown? It seems to me that for half of the neighborhood, this would be better transit access than walking to the orange line, especially depending on the destination. I have no idea if this would make any sense from an ops standpoint, or if it would even be possible or wanted by the neighborhood. In fact now that I think about it, maybe that rail spur is actively used for freight? Am I way off target here or would this be useful idea if UR were ever built?
Those tracks are spoken for. That's the Massport-owned Mystic Wharf Branch to Moran Terminal/Boston Autoport. It's presently out-of-service, but Pan Am has active freight rights on it which it has not relinquished. And much like Track 61 down in Southie, Massport has long-range plans to bring the freight trains back to the port.


There were two road proposals for this area which may/may not approximate some of what you're addressing:

  • Charlestown Haul Road. Would've extended Terminal St. 3 extra blocks direct into Sullivan through what's now just grass and a strip of the Schrafft's parking lot, in order to get all the Autoport trucks off Medford St. Rail ROW would've been realigned on the side. Massport's official proposal was defeated by the neighborhood over fears of...more trucks??? I don't quite understand that sentiment since it would've taken lots of traffic off Medford St., but somebody successfully stoked the NIMBY gland with the right amount of misinformation.
Zero transit upside to the haul road itself because it's just a quick scoot into the port, but by taking all the trucks off Medford it opens up Medford as a potential bus corridor. Right now Main and Bunker Hill St. carry the neighborhood's bus routes through the gut of neighborhood. Medford has none...but since Medford has many fewer traffic lights than Main or Bunker Hill it's got potential upside for an express bus corridor with all that truck traffic on the Sullivan end removed. You could easily send something limited-stop from Haymarket to City Square, Navy Yard, 1 or 2 major cross streets, the Schrafft's corner, and Sullivan station as a capacity/headway augmentation to the local routes. And run it much more resilient to traffic spikes than anything that travels the other neighborhood thoroughfares. It's not any sort of Urban Ring relation, but a simple express Yellow Line route could bring a lot to the table using this freed-up Medford St. capacity.


  • Rutherford Bypass. Not an official proposal as of yet, but appears on a lot of "universe of projects" lists as an offshoot of the Rutherford Ave. teardown project. This would've run a 2-lane bypass road through Bunker Hill CC's back driveway that currently runs underneath Gilmore Bridge & Community College station, then continued it to D on a derelict rail freight siding that runs alongside the I-93 deck supports from the Bunker Hill CC tennis courts to D St. Would hook into Sullivan via D St., and some sort of connection or interchange would be built on the south end for access to/from the highways and N. Washington. Potentially some sort of up/down ramp access to Gilmore Bridge, money permitting.
This would've gotten all trucks completely out of Charlestown by having straight a new straight shot from the highways aligned directly with Charlestown Haul Road @ Sullivan, and unlike Charlestown Haul this one was probably going to be open to general traffic. Would've required maybe 1-2 crap industrial buildings' worth of land-taking around D St. to find the width, but otherwise the ROW is already there as wholly expendable rear driveway and trash-strewn crabgrass. Most expensive parts would've been the ramp insertions at City Square to the highways and N. Washington, and any required modifications to Sullivan rotary (elongating it to D?).
Up till a few years ago the state was pretty enthusiastic about pushing this as a component of the Rutherford diet, but once the diet actually started taking shape any talk of the bypass seemed to have disappeared. I guess the newest regimes at City Hall and MassDOT just aren't as keen on it as their predecessors. Doubt this would've had any transit utility because of the 100% duplication of the Orange Line...right down to there being no plausible spacer stops between CC and Sullivan. Like the Medford St. scenario the upside is more about pulling thru traffic away from neighborhood traffic so the neighborhood thoroughfares can breathe better. That's got tons of crucial relevance to all the neighborhood Yellow Line routes current and future that'll have much easier time with the reshaped traffic patterns. But there's not really any specific BRT application here on the Rutherford bypass itself. The transit coattails are significant, but indirect.
 

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