The Codcast: Making getting to Logan easier
Massport is developing a number of initiatives to improve the experience of getting to and from Logan International Airport while simultaneously reducing congestion.
The authority’s focus on congestion is understandable. At most airports, as many as a third of the passengers fly in, transfer to another plane, and fly out. At Logan, the 40 million passengers tend to start or end their trips there, meaning nearly all of them use ground transportation, adding to congestion.
Passengers already make greater use of high occupancy vehicles to get to Logan than they do at any other airport in the country. But Massport officials think they can attract more passengers to the Logan Express buses that depart from Braintree, Framingham, Woburn, and Peabody by allowing them to check their bags before boarding the vehicles.
Tom Glynn, the CEO of Massport, told the TransitMatters Codcast that remote baggage check-in will allow passengers to avoid the hassle of dealing with bags at the airport and should increase ridership. “That would have a big positive impact,” he said, noting that some have suggested remote baggage check-in could also be tried at North and South stations.
Massport is also providing 16 Silver Line buses to the T to improve service to the airport and developing designs for vehicles – a monorail is a possibility — that could whisk passengers from the Blue Line stop at Logan to the airline and rental car terminals. The goal is to get people out of airport buses that are increasingly caught in congestion on roads leading to the terminals.
Glynn, who is leaving Massport November 16, was joined by John Pranckevicius, the chief financial officer who will step in as the interim replacement and is also a candidate for the CEO job. Here’s what else they had to say:
Conley container terminal – Glynn said the facility is a thriving niche business serving eastern Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire. Container traffic has grown 30 percent in the last five years, and to keep pace with the industry’s shift toward bigger and bigger vessels Massport is dredging the harbor, expanding the facility, and installing new, larger cranes.
Fish pier – Proximity to the airport is the key to success for many of Boston’s seafood processors. Glynn said North Coast Seafoods processes 100,000 pounds of fish in an eight-hour shift, and much of the catch isn’t local. The fish comes in by air to Logan and is shipped out by air to customers across the world. “You can go to a restaurant in California and order salmon and it will have come from South Boston,” Glynn said.
Big infrastructure projects – Glynn used to run the MBTA, and several times he questioned whether passenger traffic would warrant T expansions favored by his TransitMatters hosts Josh Fairchild and Jim Aloisi. His biggest concern, however, was the public’s appetite for such projects. He recalled important projects from the past – extending the Red Line to Alewife, relocating the Orange Line, and putting the Green Line at North Station underground – that today might meet a lot of resistance. “I don’t know if you can do those today because there’s so much concern that people have about their normal existence that they’re very resistant to big infrastructure projects,” he said. “I think it’s getting harder to do big infrastructure projects.”
Ride-hailing apps – In a separate interview with CommonWealth, Glynn said public officials should put their heads together to figure out the best way to address the congestion caused by transportation network companies such as Uber and Lyft. “The growth of the TNCs has contributed significantly to congestion in the city and at the airport,” he said.
A Globe editorial rips Boston Mayor Marty Walsh for quietly hiring former state rep. Carlos Henriquez — who was convicted in 2014 of punching a woman who refused to have sex with him and expelled from the House — to an $89,000-a-year city job.
Plymouth’s waterfront Pilgrim Memorial State Park, which features Plymouth Rock, reopened just in time for the busy Thanksgiving season after being closed for the summer. The reopening follows a $2.3 million facelift in advance of the town’s 400th anniversary celebration in 2020. (Wicked Local)
A woman who made anonymous allegations of sexual misconduct against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh that weren’t aired during his confirmation has admitted to investigators she made the charges up to gain attention. (National Review)
Researchers cited in the Health Policy Commission’s report on Question 1 are at odds on some of the findings. (CommonWealth) House Majority Leader Ronald Mariano says Question 1 is a blunt instrument to address a complex problem. (CommonWealth)
A Berkshire Eagle editorial endorses write-in candidate Paul Caccaviello for district attorney over the Democratic nominee, Andrea Harrington.
Teachers unions back Republican Sen. Patrick O’Connor of Weymouth at least in part because of his opposition to charters, prompting pushback from Democratic Party charter supporters who have formed a new super PAC that’s accusing the unions and O’Connor of betraying progressive values. (CommonWealth)
Rachel Adele Dec of MassINC says the so-called union “loophole” in campaign finance isn’t a very big one. (CommonWealth)
The migrant caravan moving through Mexico becomes fodder for debate in Massachusetts races. (Boston Herald)
Jeff Jacoby makes a case for repealing the transgender rights law by voting no on Question 3. (Boston Globe)
Nearly 70 percent of Massachusetts voters think the state is heading in the right direction, which probably tells you all you need to know to understand why Charlie Baker feels pretty good heading into tomorrow’s election. (Boston Globe)
The Republican secretary of state in Georgia, in a bitter race for governor from which he refuses to relinquish his oversight of elections, is claiming without evidence that Democrats made a failed attempt to hack voter registration databases. (New York Times)
Did Beto O’Rourke blow his chances in the Texas US Senate race by not tacking toward the middle, where there are lots of voters up for grabs who dislike incumbent Republican Ted Cruz? (Politico)
The first transgender nominee for governor of a state, Democrat Christine Hallquist of Vermont, is facing an uphill battle. (Boston Globe)
Amazon is in late-stage discussions with three cities — Crystal City in northern Virginia, New York, and Dallas — about locating its HQ2 but indications are the talks could entail breaking up the headquarters rather than site it in one community. (Wall Street Journal)
More than 250 international book dealers pulled more than a million of their rare and antique books from the Amazon-owned AbeBooks site after the retail giant barred sellers from several countries. (New York Times)
Dedham-based Papa Gino’s abruptly closed more than a third of its 150 restaurants across the state Sunday with no warning or explanation from officials at the pizza chain. (Patriot Ledger) Workers who were scheduled to work showed up and found the doors locked. (Lowell Sun)
Two former employees of the company leading the redevelopment of the former South Weymouth naval air base have filed a class action suit against the firm claiming workers have not been paid in a month, a claim officials of the embattled company deny. (Patriot Ledger)
Takeru Nagayoshi, a teacher in New Bedford, says it’s time to reevaluate education accountability. (CommonWealth)
Emergency room visits by children and young adults for mental health issues has surged since 2012, with the rates of black patients seeking treatment outpacing that of whites. (U.S. News & World Report)
Lights go out at Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, Connecticut, Monday morning. (MassLive)
A Pennsylvania company called Liberty Energy Trust is proposing to build a $100 million liquefied natural gas plant in Charlton that would take pipeline natural gas in the summer months and convert it to liquid form for use in winter months when pipeline capacity is scarce. (Telegram & Gazette)
Richard Gardner, a convicted serial child rapist from Weymouth who was ordered to live in Rhode Island when he was released from prison, has been arrested and is back behind bars for violating his probation after he was charged with falsely using his parents’ Massachusetts address on a marriage license application in Cranston, Rhode Island. (Providence Journal)
During Sunday Night Football, NBC ran a slightly edited Donald Trump campaign ad on immigration that CNN refused to run because the network said it was inaccurate and racist. (New York Times)
More newsroom employees tend to be white and male than their counterparts in other industries. (Pew Research Center)PASSINGS
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