Transportation

Baker pushes 2-track S. Coast rail approach

Baker pushes 2-track S. Coast rail approach

Pacheco fears Middleborough approach may doom Stoughton line

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE The Baker administration has agreed on a course for the first phase of long-promised commuter rail service to the South Coast, working under an approach that contemplates diesel service along an existing Middleborough/Lakeville rail line while engineering, design and permitting work continues on a possible electric service route through Stoughton. Transportation(...)

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Baker to T: Cut spending but not service

Baker to T: Cut spending but not service

Says agency can use extra state funds to cover any deficit

GOV. CHARLIE BAKER said on Tuesday that MBTA officials should continue to search for savings at the agency, but he indicated he didn’t want spending cuts to disrupt service. The governor also eased some of the financial pressure on the T, saying the agency could use some of the so-called contract assistance money provided by(...)

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5 takeaways from new Orange Line car

5 takeaways from new Orange Line car

Smile, you’re on the T’s candid camera

MBTA OFFICIALS on Tuesday unveiled a three-quarters mockup of the 152 new Orange Line cars that are on order and due to start arriving at the end of this year. The wheel-less mockup allows operators, mechanics, riders, and other stakeholders to explore the vehicle and report any problems that need to be corrected. Here are(...)

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Baker backs off commuter rail cut

Baker backs off commuter rail cut

Takes weekend service off the chopping block

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE THE ELIMINATION OF WEEKEND COMMUTER rail service will no longer be considered an option to close the MBTA’s looming budget deficit after Gov. Charlie Baker on Monday said he would “explore alternatives” to close a $42 million gap that will preserve weekend service. Baker backed off the idea a week after(...)

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T report recommends management, oversight changes

T report recommends management, oversight changes

Backs a board to directly oversee agency beyond 2020

THE MBTA SHOULD REVAMP its top management structure and a board should continue to provide direct oversight of T operations after 2020, according to a draft strategic report issued on Monday by the T’s Fiscal and Management Control Board. The T’s current management structure calls for two coequal leaders  – a general manager and a(...)

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Savings estimates from commuter rail cuts vary a lot

Savings estimates from commuter rail cuts vary a lot

Halting weekend service would save between $7m and $18m

THE INABILITY OF MBTA OFFICIALS to say definitively how many passengers ride commuter rail on weekends is making it difficult to push for elimination of the service. The T last week said it was considering eliminating the weekend service to save $10 million as part of a budget-balancing package for the coming fiscal year, but(...)

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T offers up other paratransit options

T offers up other paratransit options

Disabled users demand withdrawal of proposed service cut

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE LAST WEEK MBTA OFFICIALS presented some tough medicine the agency could take to zero-out its $42 million structural deficit for the coming fiscal year, including slashing weekend commuter rail trips and special service for disabled passengers. On Monday, MBTA officials offered up some options that might make the paratransit service reductions(...)

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Carmen’s chief sets record straight

Carmen’s chief sets record straight

Says Pacheco Law exemption at T didn't force concessions

IT’S TIME TO set the record straight on why the Boston Carmen’s Union agreed to open up its contract with the MBTA, negotiate amendments that greatly benefit the T, and help the authority climb out of the financial hole it’s in thanks to decades of neglect and underfunding. Everyone appears to have a theory –(...)

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The Codcast: Getting around in the age of Trump

For all the attention paid to the new administration since President Trump was inaugurated, the new president and his policies remain enigmas to advocates across the spectrum of services reliant on government support, perhaps none more perplexed – and worried – than transportation advocates. Beth Osborne, a senior advisor for Washington-based Transportation for America, was(...)

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Crunching the T’s numbers

News coverage of the MBTA’s budget-balancing initiatives focused almost entirely on halting weekend commuter rail service and curtailing rides for disabled riders, but the biggest savings would come from privatization. T officials estimated they could save $27 million, or about 61 percent of the proposed package of spending reductions, by privatizing bus maintenance at garages(...)

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