MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Silver

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MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Silver

Postby Teamdriver » Sun May 05, 2013 7:02 am

" There are a lot of things going for the proposed extension of the MBTA Silver Line to Chelsea and East Boston.

The proposed route, which links the two neighborhoods with South Station, would connect two historically underserved communities to the heart of Boston. It would ease crowding on the notoriously overcrowded and plodding 111 bus line. And it would be a first step toward fulfilling transportation advocates’ goals of connecting the far reaches of the MBTA system in an “urban ring.”

But most of all, it’s cheap. The extension would cost somewhere in the order tens of millions of dollars, according to officials with the Massachusetts Department of Transportation.

“In terms of transportation dollars,” said Jay Ash, Chelsea’s city manager, who has pushed for the extension for 16 years, “this is a relatively modest expenditure.” Full story for BostonGlobe.com subscribers.

Martine Powers can be reached at mpowers@globe.com. "
http://www.boston.com/news/local/massac ... story.html
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Re: MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Sil

Postby BostonUrbEx » Sun May 05, 2013 8:38 am

I've been to the meetings and the chances of this happening are very, very high. There's a great of push behind this, considering it's relatively small scope. But when it finally comes time to implement, we'll see just how far it actually goes and if the small amount of funds necessary are put forward. Although, the capital costs, despite being small, are still pretty ridiculous if you ask me. Why you need anything other than a couple of bus shelters + signs is beyond me. It's all operating cost.

Also; bus discussion on RR.net?
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Re: MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Sil

Postby Adams_Umass_Boston » Sun May 05, 2013 1:10 pm

I had posted this back on March 5th in the Silver line thread.

viewtopic.php?f=65&t=7517&start=390
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Re: MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Sil

Postby MBTA3247 » Sun May 05, 2013 3:44 pm

They would need some more dual-mode buses to operate the service. That's probably most of the cost.
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Re: MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Sil

Postby BostonUrbEx » Sun May 05, 2013 5:55 pm

MBTA3247 wrote:They would need some more dual-mode buses to operate the service. That's probably most of the cost.


Not really. They have plenty of buses. But the MBTA wants to have a huge excess of them for whatever ridiculous reason. Thus, we can't take a few of the excess buses without ordering even more excess buses.

Silly.
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Re: MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Sil

Postby MBTA3247 » Sun May 05, 2013 8:02 pm

BostonUrbEx wrote:
MBTA3247 wrote:They would need some more dual-mode buses to operate the service. That's probably most of the cost.


Not really. They have plenty of buses. But the MBTA wants to have a huge excess of them for whatever ridiculous reason. Thus, we can't take a few of the excess buses without ordering even more excess buses.

Silly.

Looking at NETransit, you're right, they only use 53% of the dual-mode fleet at rush hour. That's an excessive amount of spares they're keeping. I'd guess that they'd rather have excessive spares than risk cutting service if a bunch break down at the same time, since they can't grab buses from other garages to fill in.
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Re: MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Sil

Postby The EGE » Sun May 05, 2013 9:00 pm

The dual-modes are used to cover when one of the subway lines gets FUBARed.

Back at least mildly related things: I am curious if the GJ will be converted. On one hand, bus transit is better than no transit, and any busway work on the GJ could be converted later to light rail. On the other, it might be an excuse to delay getting real transit to some heavily underserved areas.
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Re: MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Sil

Postby BostonUrbEx » Sun May 05, 2013 9:02 pm

The EGE wrote:The dual-modes are used to cover when one of the subway lines gets FUBARed.

Back at least mildly related things: I am curious if the GJ will be converted. On one hand, bus transit is better than no transit, and any busway work on the GJ could be converted later to light rail. On the other, it might be an excuse to delay getting real transit to some heavily underserved areas.


The plan is to in fact use the Grand Junction which MassPort recently opened as a haul road.
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Re: MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Sil

Postby jboutiet » Sun May 05, 2013 9:07 pm

Are they required to keep that many spare buses on hand for busing of one or more of the major subway lines?
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Re: MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Sil

Postby joshg1 » Sun May 05, 2013 9:21 pm

I didn't see any figures in the Globe, but building a busway (a new road) from Chelsea St bridge to the CR station won't be cheap. I see the main appeal of this route as a free transfer from Chelsea to the subway network at Airport. Passengers will go to Logan and the Seaport, but it strikes me that downtown, change for everywhere, is the destination of people boarding inbound 111-117 buses.
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Re: MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Sil

Postby jbvb » Mon May 06, 2013 11:48 am

It will also make changing from commuter rail to Silver at Chelsea a reasonable option for air travelers from Swampscott - Ipswich and Beverly - Rockport. I'd use it for Logan - Newburyport trips, because 6-footers don't fit in C&J's bus seats. The ex-B&A East Boston RoW won't be missed, barring an improbable resurgence of boxcar-to-your-loading-dock railroading.

A factor that isn't going to be a popular topic with MassDOT is that the Tobin is 63 years old. Even though it's one of the few bridges in the state they're bothering to keep painted, it will not last forever. The cheapest way to replace it demolishes the current one first - say, 3-4 years out of service.
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Re: MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Sil

Postby jamesinclair » Tue May 07, 2013 2:22 am

BostonUrbEx wrote:Also; bus discussion on RR.net?


Trackless trolleys are sort of technically trains, mechanically and legally. Someone correct me if Im wrong, but I believe trackless trolleys dont require license plates and the drivers dont even need a drivers license (though the MBTA requires it, it isnt state law).

That being said, the entire SL Waterfront system should be electric.

SL2? Easiest electrification in the country.

The ted? Dont give me crap at about highway rules yada yada. If there can be lights in the tunnel, there can be trolley wires. Worst case scenarios? You get the trolley buses with a battery that lets them go a mile off battery. They exist in many cities.

Chelsea? Build it right. Make that bad boy electric.

Dual mode buses are the worst of both worlds. All the negatives of a diesel system (ie, all the parts and all the maintenance issues) and then you plop in a whole secondary system.
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Re: MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Sil

Postby F-line to Dudley via Park » Tue May 07, 2013 12:14 pm

jamesinclair wrote:
BostonUrbEx wrote:Also; bus discussion on RR.net?


Trackless trolleys are sort of technically trains, mechanically and legally. Someone correct me if Im wrong, but I believe trackless trolleys dont require license plates and the drivers dont even need a drivers license (though the MBTA requires it, it isnt state law).


Correct. None of the Cambridge TT's have license plates because they're considered fixed routes. I'm not sure about the SL dual-modes, but unlikely they have the same exemption because off-wire it's no longer a fixed route.

They are indeed like a PCC wearing a bus costume (the early ones almost literally PCC lookalikes except for the rubber tires). Right down to the way they trigger switches with power-thru or coast-thru rules. Go to North Cambridge carhouse when they've got the garage doors open and one of the TT's opened up and you'll see a dirt simple traction motor in the back and little more. Really weird seeing the hood popped open on something that looks like a bus, and the space where the bus guts are supposed to be being...nearly empty.
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Re: MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Sil

Postby CRail » Tue May 07, 2013 8:32 pm

Dual modes are not confined to the infrastructure and are therefor registered as buses.

As for the number of buses, remember that the SL3 did not survive. Remember, too, that phase 3 didn't happen. They were probably still banking on the Airport-Dudley line happening when they procured the DMA fleet.
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Re: MassDOT mulls linking Chelsea and South Station with Sil

Postby jamesinclair » Wed May 08, 2013 1:38 am

CRail wrote:Dual modes are not confined to the infrastructure and are therefor registered as buses.

As for the number of buses, remember that the SL3 did not survive. Remember, too, that phase 3 didn't happen. They were probably still banking on the Airport-Dudley line happening when they procured the DMA fleet.


There was also SL4 to Andrew which never even launched but was on maps.
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