Equal or Better: The Story of the Silver Line

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

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Re: Equal or Better: The Story of the Silver Line

Postby CRail » Sat Apr 21, 2012 5:16 pm

There are a ton of streets with rails still underneath them. Trapelo Rd in Belmont still has the wire over it as well. I wouldn't run a handflat over that rail though!
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Re: Equal or Better: The Story of the Silver Line

Postby Rbts Stn » Mon Apr 23, 2012 8:39 am

CRail wrote:There are a ton of streets with rails still underneath them. Trapelo Rd in Belmont still has the wire over it as well. I wouldn't run a handflat over that rail though!

I was on Belmont Street in Belmont on Saturday, and it sure looked like rails under the road surface there as well. Wires overhead, and long, parallel rusty cracks in the pavement underneath.
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Re: Equal or Better: The Story of the Silver Line

Postby F-line to Dudley via Park » Mon Apr 23, 2012 12:23 pm

Rbts Stn wrote:
CRail wrote:There are a ton of streets with rails still underneath them. Trapelo Rd in Belmont still has the wire over it as well. I wouldn't run a handflat over that rail though!

I was on Belmont Street in Belmont on Saturday, and it sure looked like rails under the road surface there as well. Wires overhead, and long, parallel rusty cracks in the pavement underneath.


Oh yes...several spots along the 73 where old rail is sticking up through the pavement. See it while it lasts; MassHighway is rebuilding that entire road in a couple of years and whatever's underneath will get torn to shreds.
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Re: Equal or Better: The Story of the Silver Line

Postby Gerry6309 » Tue May 15, 2012 4:58 pm

Point 1:

Washington St. in the South End and Lower Roxbury was designed as a grand boulevard over the traditional main entry to Boston. When the El came along, it was perfectly set-up for it. For that reason the section got graceful arched bents straddling a trolley reservation. This was the number one location to photograph the el. As the neighborhood filled in around it, what was left of the "Neck" became the South End, which later became "Skid Row" and later was re-yuppified. It is at Union Park St. and Cass Boulevard that the street merged with older construction, and the el became an eyesore.

Point 2:

There was streetcar service under most of this section until 1938 and south of Northhampton Street until 1953. The through service became the 49 bus in 1939 and that heritage continues as the Silver Line (Route 749) today. Call it what you want, it is still a descendent of the old trolley line and it has run since before the el was there. So when the el was removed, we were left with what we have today - a bus line! (and the city's widest undivided street, pedestrian roulette anyone?)

Point 3:

Roxbury is a relatively poor community, long a stopping off point for immigrant families, and generates many transit riders. It got a raw deal when the el was removed. It took 15 years to get the excuse I call the "Slither Line", along what could have been one of the top urban light rail installations in the country! The cost could have been minimal, with a disused subway portal only a block away, on a street which was built in modern times (Oak St. West).

The only way to build good transport in Roxbury would be to charter a new private company and give them the necessary rights to build it! Legislate it - with or without City Hall
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The next stop is Washington. Change for Forest Hills Trains on the Winter St. Platform, and Everett Trains on the Summer St. Platform. This is an Ashmont train, change for Braintree at Columbia.
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