CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATION

Discussion relating to commuter rail, light rail, and subway operations of the MBTA.

Moderators: CRail, sery2831

CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATION

Postby Teamdriver » Mon Dec 24, 2012 9:45 am

CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATION

'' For more than 100 years, passengers from across the country have entered Boston through the majestic South Station, which once boasted 28 tracks and a 613-car capacity.

State officials will soon launch a $43-million process to plan for a project that will cost hundreds of millions of dollars more to expand South Station in an effort to boost local and regional rail service.

Take a look at the station’s oscillating history, from the nation’s busiest railway station to a National landmark.''

http://www.boston.com/yourtown/specials ... .html?pg=1
User avatar
Teamdriver
 
Posts: 954
Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2008 3:18 pm

Re: CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATIO

Postby Charliemta » Mon Dec 24, 2012 4:40 pm

Interesting article and photos, but written a bit vaguely in places.

The "subway" referenced in the first few photos must be the underground train loop, as the Dorchester rapid transit line (red Line) wasn't built until later.

Also, what "third rail" are they talking about? It must be the elevated line on Atlantic Ave, unless it refers to the third rail that was on the Old Colony Line back then.
Long live the "El"
User avatar
Charliemta
 
Posts: 317
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2004 7:51 pm

Re: CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATIO

Postby 3rdrail » Mon Dec 24, 2012 8:36 pm

Charliemta wrote:Interesting article and photos, but written a bit vaguely in places.

The "subway" referenced in the first few photos must be the underground train loop, as the Dorchester rapid transit line (red Line) wasn't built until later.

Also, what "third rail" are they talking about? It must be the elevated line on Atlantic Ave, unless it refers to the third rail that was on the Old Colony Line back then.

I enjoyed it also, Charlie, although I got Shangheid a little more than half way through when the door shut in my face demanding a subscription. All told however, for a condensed history, especially one suited for a mainstream audience, I'd have to say that it was superb.

The "subway" and "third rail" references the Main Line El which began construction the following year from Dudley to Sullivan Sq. In 1898, it would be three years until the Atlantic Division reached South Station and fourteen years until the Dorchester Tunnel was brought down by South Station. The underground loop was, I believe, a failure from the start since the New Haven RR wasn't allowed to run an electrified commuter operation down their Boston - Providence Main Line. At that time, the El's Main Line was a major upscale with Rapid Transit in Boston as was looked at as futuristic development. It would be the stuff that advertisers would link to. (FWIW, I also believe that the author has taken some liberties with terminologies that he encountered in researching this piece, some of which he has used, some of which he has substituted.)

For the Globe, it wasn't too shoddy. Appropriately enough, here's the Our Lady of the Railway Chapel -
Attachments
ourladyoftherailwaychapelssta.jpg
ourladyoftherailwaychapelssta.jpg (93.65 KiB) Viewed 2744 times
~Paul Joyce~
[i]Moderator: Toy Trains, Model Railroading, Outdoor and Live Steam

Paul Joyce passed away in August, 2013. We honor his memory and his devotion at railroad.net.
User avatar
3rdrail
 
Posts: 5641
Joined: Thu Jun 29, 2006 11:10 pm
Location: Boston

Re: CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATIO

Postby Head-end View » Mon Dec 24, 2012 8:55 pm

Well, while they're at it maybe they will enlarge the food court to include a real ice cream stand like Baskin-Robbins or Haagen-Dazs, something South Station sadly lacks. There's really no place like New York!
Head-end View
 
Posts: 2321
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 10:00 pm
Location: The second row on a SEPTA Silverliner V

Re: CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATIO

Postby Dick H » Mon Dec 24, 2012 10:14 pm

"Hundreds of millions of dollars" to expand the South Station. I think not in this decade, at least.
Massachusetts can't even keep up with falling lights and wall panels in the highway tunnells around
Boston. And the MBTA already has plans for the South Coast Rail, the Green Line extensions and
billions in repairs to existing facilities. Show me the money.....
Dick H
 
Posts: 3030
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2005 8:55 pm
Location: Dover, NH

Re: CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATIO

Postby wicked » Tue Dec 25, 2012 11:35 am

3rdrail wrote:I enjoyed it also, Charlie, although I got Shangheid a little more than half way through when the door shut in my face demanding a subscription


3rdrail, minor correction: you won't need a subscription, per se, just register on the site. Everything on the Boston.com site is free.
wicked
 
Posts: 440
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 1:17 pm
Location: MBTA Red Line, formerly WMATA Blue/Yellow

Re: CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATIO

Postby 3rdrail » Wed Dec 26, 2012 2:52 am

Thank you.
~Paul Joyce~
[i]Moderator: Toy Trains, Model Railroading, Outdoor and Live Steam

Paul Joyce passed away in August, 2013. We honor his memory and his devotion at railroad.net.
User avatar
3rdrail
 
Posts: 5641
Joined: Thu Jun 29, 2006 11:10 pm
Location: Boston

Re: CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATIO

Postby livesteamer » Tue Mar 12, 2013 11:58 am

I actually attended Mass in the station's chapel--around 5-6 times--to a serious train buff--Mass in South Station was just the right thing to do.
Marty Harrison
MP 208.1 on the UP's Sedalia Sub
livesteamer
 
Posts: 219
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 7:58 pm
Location: Knob Noster, MO

Re: CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATIO

Postby jaymac » Tue Mar 12, 2013 12:46 pm

Don't forget the place of secular worship -- Boston Model Railroad -- and the via dolorosa: the old, clopping wooden slats -- not even stairs -- of the escalator to and from South Station Under.
"A white SUV with a roof antenna just might not be a company van."
jaymac
 
Posts: 3390
Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 1:08 pm

Re: CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATIO

Postby livesteamer » Tue Mar 12, 2013 12:59 pm

Never knew about the model railroad club in South Station but I did like to hang out at Eric Fuchs on Tremont Street
.
Marty Harrison
MP 208.1 on the UP's Sedalia Sub
livesteamer
 
Posts: 219
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 7:58 pm
Location: Knob Noster, MO

Re: CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATIO

Postby 3rdrail » Tue Mar 12, 2013 1:12 pm

Oh yeah, it was (literally) Transit Heaven ! The chapel, wooden block escalator that sounded like a brook flowing over rocks, the roar of a 06/0700 roaring in or out of the station, Atlantic Ave., with Union RR clomping on uneven street track, and Herb Smith with pipe in his Boston Model Railroad around Kingston St. It was here that I saw my first trolley kit, a Type 5 which later appeared as a present. I have a No. 4 Cambridge Tunnel car scratchbuilt by Herb as well. FWIW, as I grew up and went to various "hobby stores", I always thought that that one of Herb's was the most original and interesting. He had a collection of pretty much everything, new and used, and you saw stuff there that you would see no other place. His Boston trolley models were a case in point.
~Paul Joyce~
[i]Moderator: Toy Trains, Model Railroading, Outdoor and Live Steam

Paul Joyce passed away in August, 2013. We honor his memory and his devotion at railroad.net.
User avatar
3rdrail
 
Posts: 5641
Joined: Thu Jun 29, 2006 11:10 pm
Location: Boston

Re: CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATIO

Postby jaymac » Tue Mar 12, 2013 1:13 pm

Boston Model wasn't in South Station. It was there I learned that O-Gauge was something other than Lionel.
"A white SUV with a roof antenna just might not be a company van."
jaymac
 
Posts: 3390
Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 1:08 pm

Re: CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATIO

Postby TomNelligan » Tue Mar 12, 2013 2:52 pm

That wood-slatted escalator was a classic, especially since your footing was never completely level so you were wise to hang onto the handrail. At the top, on Atlantic Avenue, was the stop for the South Station-North Station bus that had replaced the El. I also remember dodging the pigeons that lived in the concourse after flying in through the open platform gates. And the painted rollsigns at each track that announced destinations. Like those at North Station, they were often re-used and you could see the ghosts of discontinued trains under the latest coat of paint.
TomNelligan
 
Posts: 3180
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2004 5:43 pm
Location: Massachusetts

Re: CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATIO

Postby livesteamer » Tue Mar 12, 2013 3:07 pm

Was Boston Model just around the corner (or sort around the corner) from South Station? I do remember a model train store nearby and I would hang out there waiting for my P&B bus to Scituate--this would have been around 1968-70 timeframe.
Marty Harrison
MP 208.1 on the UP's Sedalia Sub
livesteamer
 
Posts: 219
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 7:58 pm
Location: Knob Noster, MO

Re: CONSTANT EVOLUTION: THE HISTORY OF BOSTON’S SOUTH STATIO

Postby ExCon90 » Tue Mar 12, 2013 3:20 pm

On Image 9, are they talking about a Telautograph? And does anyone know whether any of them were saved anywhere? A pair would make a great exhibit for a museum.

And were there any other escalators like that? The first time I saw it I wondered, are all the escalators in Boston like this? But I never saw another one.
ExCon90
 
Posts: 3437
Joined: Thu Sep 18, 2008 1:22 pm

Next

Return to Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA)

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: johnpbarlow and 6 guests