Needham Line

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

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chrisf
Posts: 358
Joined: Sat Apr 24, 2004 9:35 pm

Re: Needham Line

Post by chrisf » Sat Oct 05, 2019 7:53 am

Rbts Stn wrote:
Sat Oct 05, 2019 4:41 am
Sometime yesterday the continued announcements of No Saturday Service on the Needham line (for PTC) changed from finishing up on October 12th to finishing up on November 9th.
The signage has been modified to say that the outage continues until November 10, so we can probably assume that Saturday service won’t resume until November 16. It’s disappointing they’re late by a month on this.

thomas1897
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Joined: Mon Oct 21, 2019 7:20 am

Re: Needham Line

Post by thomas1897 » Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:24 am

The MBTA should consider upgrading this line; there is great potential to increase ridership to Millis and Dover. Also extending the Green Line to Needham Junction for more frequent service to downtown Boston and Fenway Park. The continuance of the commuter rail service southwest to Millis and Dover would be an excellent opportunity to provide rail transportation to those communities. Needham extension of the Green Line from Newton Highlands to Needham Junction brings better and more frequent service to Needham, Newton Lower Falls and business community along route 128/95.

troffey
Posts: 108
Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2017 8:36 pm

Re: Needham Line

Post by troffey » Fri Oct 25, 2019 4:32 pm

The long term vision that has been discussed to turning this into an Orange Line extension to free up commuter rail capacity on the SW Corridor.

charlesriverbranch
Posts: 149
Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2015 6:53 am

Re: Needham Line

Post by charlesriverbranch » Mon Oct 28, 2019 10:07 am

thomas1897 wrote:
Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:24 am
The MBTA should consider upgrading this line; there is great potential to increase ridership to Millis and Dover. Also extending the Green Line to Needham Junction for more frequent service to downtown Boston and Fenway Park. The continuance of the commuter rail service southwest to Millis and Dover would be an excellent opportunity to provide rail transportation to those communities. Needham extension of the Green Line from Newton Highlands to Needham Junction brings better and more frequent service to Needham, Newton Lower Falls and business community along route 128/95.
The former Charles River Branch from Needham Junction to the Dover line is now a rail trail, as is the portion from Newton Highlands to Newton Upper Falls. There was a plan to connect the two and extend the rail trail all the way to Millis, but the bridge over Route 128 and its abutments were removed during the recent highway widening project, so there is no possibility of either a Green Line or a rail trail extension.

charlesriverbranch
Posts: 149
Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2015 6:53 am

Re: Needham Line

Post by charlesriverbranch » Mon Oct 28, 2019 10:09 am

troffey wrote:
Fri Oct 25, 2019 4:32 pm
The long term vision that has been discussed to turning this into an Orange Line extension to free up commuter rail capacity on the SW Corridor.
I suspect the more likely outcome would be to terminate the Needham Line trains at Forest Hills and require passengers to transfer there to and from the Orange Line.

charlesriverbranch
Posts: 149
Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2015 6:53 am

Re: Needham Line

Post by charlesriverbranch » Mon Oct 28, 2019 10:11 am

troffey wrote:
Fri Oct 25, 2019 4:32 pm
The long term vision that has been discussed to turning this into an Orange Line extension to free up commuter rail capacity on the SW Corridor.
Oh, and does anyone else find it odd that the most northeasterly part of the Northeast Corridor is called the Southwest Corridor?

Tallguy
Posts: 21
Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2019 5:33 pm

Re: Needham Line

Post by Tallguy » Mon Oct 28, 2019 10:29 am

I would bet on OL/GL substitution in 10-2 yrs, with a possible Millis/Dover dinky to West Rox many after that.

jaymac
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Re: Needham Line

Post by jaymac » Mon Oct 28, 2019 12:24 pm

charlesriverbranch » Mon Oct 28, 2019 11:11 am
...Oh, and does anyone else find it odd that the most northeasterly part of the Northeast Corridor is called the Southwest Corridor?
Boston being the Hub of the Universe, it would be odd to call a route that would run southwest of said Hub anything but the Southwest Corridor.
"Watching trains is better than smoking meth."
--Source, location, and time undisclosed.

rr503
Posts: 704
Joined: Sat May 02, 2015 4:13 pm
Location: North by Northwest

Re: Needham Line

Post by rr503 » Mon Oct 28, 2019 1:46 pm

troffey wrote:
Fri Oct 25, 2019 4:32 pm
The long term vision that has been discussed to turning this into an Orange Line extension to free up commuter rail capacity on the SW Corridor.
Would be great if they finally followed through on these discussions if for no other reason than that crossing move north of Forest Hills really isn't good for anyone's capacity.

highgreen215
Posts: 437
Joined: Wed Oct 03, 2012 11:43 pm
Location: Roslindale, Mass.

Re: Needham Line

Post by highgreen215 » Mon Oct 28, 2019 2:47 pm

Requiring riders from Needham and beyond to change to the OL at Forest Hills will result in two things: disappearance of Needham branch service and a whole lot more cars on the road. After the comparative luxury of commuter rail, outer suburb Needham folks are not going to take kindly to squeezing into stand-up ransid trapid cars. Most will probably prefer the comfort of their own automobiles.

Arborwayfan
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Location: Terre Haute, Indiana

Re: Needham Line

Post by Arborwayfan » Mon Oct 28, 2019 3:06 pm

Re SWC: It's Boston-centric because it's about Boston: In the 1940s-70s highway plans there was the Western Expressway (now the Mass Pike Extension inside 128); the Northwest Expressway (now US 3 north of 128; I don't think it goes in any further as limited access, does it?), the Northern Expressway (now I-93 north of the city), the Southeast Expressway (now I-93 south of the Artery), and the Southwest Expressway (8 lanes of traffic with rail and subway in the median, Boston's own Dan Ryan Expwy. When the Southwest Expressway was cancelled with a lot of the land already taken and cleared (1973) they took the name for the rail-and-park combination. So the NEC comes into Boston through the SWC the same way it used to come in over the Boston and Providence or the New Haven (pick your era) and the same way the NEC goes into New York over the Hell Gate Bridge.

And I agree that change-at-Forest-Hills would be a non-starter. The Roslindale folks would find it quicker to take one of the constant stream of buses to FH; the Bellevue-Highland-West Roxbury folks might, too, since the buses on or near Centre St. are two or three times as frequent as trains even at rush hour, IIRC. The further out people wouldn't have those buses, but they could still find their trip fifteen mins longer or so (depending on where they wanted to get off in town). It's a good little middle-suburban express service and the people who use it have a right to want to keep it. OL conversion maybe OK, but still there would need to be something for the folks in N Ctr and N Hts.

MBTA3247
Posts: 2740
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Location: Milton

Re: Needham Line

Post by MBTA3247 » Mon Oct 28, 2019 4:40 pm

charlesriverbranch wrote:
Mon Oct 28, 2019 10:07 am
thomas1897 wrote:
Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:24 am
The MBTA should consider upgrading this line; there is great potential to increase ridership to Millis and Dover. Also extending the Green Line to Needham Junction for more frequent service to downtown Boston and Fenway Park. The continuance of the commuter rail service southwest to Millis and Dover would be an excellent opportunity to provide rail transportation to those communities. Needham extension of the Green Line from Newton Highlands to Needham Junction brings better and more frequent service to Needham, Newton Lower Falls and business community along route 128/95.
The former Charles River Branch from Needham Junction to the Dover line is now a rail trail, as is the portion from Newton Highlands to Newton Upper Falls. There was a plan to connect the two and extend the rail trail all the way to Millis, but the bridge over Route 128 and its abutments were removed during the recent highway widening project, so there is no possibility of either a Green Line or a rail trail extension.
The old bridge over Rt 128 had to be removed to widen the highway, but there is no reason a new one couldn't be built there. And let's be honest, a Green Line extension would require an entirely new bridge anyway.
"The destination of this train is [BEEP BEEP]" -announcement on an Ashmont train.

MBTA3247
Posts: 2740
Joined: Tue Jul 11, 2006 6:01 pm
Location: Milton

Re: Needham Line

Post by MBTA3247 » Mon Oct 28, 2019 4:43 pm

Arborwayfan wrote:
Mon Oct 28, 2019 3:06 pm
Re SWC: It's Boston-centric because it's about Boston: In the 1940s-70s highway plans there was the Western Expressway (now the Mass Pike Extension inside 128); the Northwest Expressway (now US 3 north of 128; I don't think it goes in any further as limited access, does it?), the Northern Expressway (now I-93 north of the city), the Southeast Expressway (now I-93 south of the Artery), and the Southwest Expressway (8 lanes of traffic with rail and subway in the median, Boston's own Dan Ryan Expwy.
The Northwest Expressway was to have gone all the way into Cambridge to connect with the Inner Belt Expressway (also never built); only a little bit of the ROW south of Rt 128 was graded. There was also supposed to have been a Northeast Expressway, carrying I-95 in from the north along essentially the same route at Rt 1.
"The destination of this train is [BEEP BEEP]" -announcement on an Ashmont train.

Tallguy
Posts: 21
Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2019 5:33 pm

Re: Needham Line

Post by Tallguy » Mon Oct 28, 2019 5:09 pm

There would no longer be "a constant stream of buses" . THAT IS THE WHOLE POINT! The OL would replace them. And Needham folk would take the GL, not the OL

chrisf
Posts: 358
Joined: Sat Apr 24, 2004 9:35 pm

Re: Needham Line

Post by chrisf » Mon Oct 28, 2019 5:53 pm

Tallguy wrote:
Mon Oct 28, 2019 5:09 pm
There would no longer be "a constant stream of buses" . THAT IS THE WHOLE POINT! The OL would replace them. And Needham folk would take the GL, not the OL
A trip downtown from Needham on the Green Line would certainly take well more than an hour, probably closer to 90 minutes. Those customers are not likely to keep using the T if their commute time doubles.

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