Red Line woes continue this morning

Packed Red Line at JFK/UMass

Riders from Ashmont trying to get onto train from Braintree at JFK. Photo by Jerome Leslie.

Updated, 7:50 a.m.

First it was signal problems inbound approaching South Station. Then, a third rail cracked in the area of JFK/UMass, which forced riders arriving from Ashmont to try to cram into already packed trains from Braintree.

Also, the Mattapan High Speed Line is more like the Mattapan No Speed Line due to a dead trolley.

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    Pathetic

    We are honorary members of the 3rd world. Why aren't management, labor leaders and our political leadership being raked over the rails over this dragged out,ongoing debacle?

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    I have a car

    And I ended up driving into work today instead of taking my chances with the Red Line. Can you believe that the parking is only $35! It's a steal when you consider it costs twice as much to get a LinkPass (subway and most city buses).

    Oh, wait. That's $35 per day vs. $70 per month. Oh.

    Nevermind.

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    A suburbanite?

    I am well and truly offended!. I live in North Quincy and dutifully pay my $5/day to park in the North Quincy lot. I am not a suburbanite! As my neighbors and I will tell you, we are an extension of Boston. Suburbanite - pffft!

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    No offense taken

    If Adam ever bans snark on this board, I will be in big trouble!

    I get what you're saying about avoiding the parking garage/lot fees. I used to live near Harvard Square and every weekend night, the streets would be jammed with visitors who thought they parked just far enough away that they wouldn't get ticketed for not having a resident sticker. It didn't end well for them.

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    Cheaper lots, Nancy

    Depends on how far you are willing to walk or if you are willing to take a #4 bus or Silverline for the last bit (not sure where you work), but the lot by the ICA is $15 a day.

    (or throw a bike in the back of your car ... I'm surprised at the number of people I see do that)

    Easy to walk back to your car if you choose to take the Silver Line to Harpoon before you leave ... and the ICA is free on Thursday nights, too.

    There are cheaper lots

    but I'm just getting over a fever and have a horrific cough so I chose the super deluxe option. Otherwise, the mud lots are my first choice because they're so far south. Easy in, easy out to Quincy.

    I changed jobs and moved up near Government Center. I used to work in the Seaport area but now I look at bricks and cement and ambulances wailing down the street to MGH. Such sadness - I used to go outside and eat lunch in the summertime on the steps of the ICA that overlook the harbor.

    And I just re-read your post and now I'm a bit sad at how long it's been since I've been to the ICA.

    Brutal?

    According to the Globe Mr. Grab-auskas was paid a total of $327,487 to leave the job. The only brutality was to tax payers.

    Was he a scapegoat? Was he incompetent? Maybe he ultimately just didn't care. During his tenure buses and trains were secretly removed from the schedule. The MBTA has a basic job of providing transportation. When the head of the transportation stopped providing that transportation then there was absolutely no reason for him to stay.

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    Time for some more "professional counseling" for MBTA GM?

    (MBTA General Manager) Beverly Scott’s relationship with her board of directors in Atlanta had grown so strained that the board in 2010 paid $144,000 to a business psychologist to help Scott and her leadership team improve their management styles. -- boston.com, Nov. 10, 2012

    When a damaged candidate is given the job, apparently for reasons other than her (in)ability to run a major transit system, this is what you can expect.

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    Re: Really?

    By all means, bring the Olympics here. Why not? Let the rest of the world share the joys of our sterling transportation infrastructure. We're in such a hurry to prove we're a "world-class" city, we bring events here we're just not ready to handle without putting a significant strain on already overburdened resources. Can't we just do the hard work necessary to just be a city that serves its residents well with good schools, roads and public transportation. We don't need to be Beijing, Rio de Janeiro or Sochi. Let's just be Boston. We have so much to be proud of already with medicine and education. Let's use some of the brilliant minds here to build not an adequate city, but the city of the future. More immediately, let's get the T in shape.

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    High Speed?

    Wait, it's actually called "High Speed Line"? By which era's standard? The same era where DSL is considered high speed internet in hotels? Isn't there a false advertising law that prevents words like that being thrown around loosely?

    Made sense in the 1920s...

    It's higher speed than a streetcar stuck in local traffic, I suppose... I kind of wonder if that name was just some way of apologizing to Milton and Mattapan that the Red Line itself stopped at Ashmont rather than continuing down the line (my understanding is that it was all one line back when it was a steam railroad)

    Mattapan-Ashmont High Speed Trolley Line

    I forget where I heard it described this way, but I found it proper: The "High Speed" part of the name is vestigial.

    In all seriousness, though, I'm fairly certain this little trolley line is one of the best-performing segments of the T. How often do we hear about a breakdown along its route? This is the first time I recall it being mentioned among the almost daily breakdowns of other parts of the system. While I'm far from a daily rider now, during the 35 or so years I did take it on a regular basis it was pretty much as reliable as the sun coming up in the morning.

    Suldog
    http://jimsuldog.blogspot.com

    Couldn't agree more. I take

    Couldn't agree more. I take the trolley from Milton to Ashmont (then on to South Station) everyday and the Mattapan trolley is far and away more reliable than the Red Line. I can count in one hand the number of times it has broken down in the past few months. I could also count on one hand the number of times the Red Line has broken down....in the past week. I wish that ancient trolley went straight to South Station. Instead, tomorrow will be my third day of driving into work because it will be cold (in Boston, in December, go figure) and I have no faith the Red Line will get me into town or back home.

    High Speed Line *was* high speed

    The high speed line was originally a dedicated ROW to funnel streetcars to Ashmont that were coming from Milton, Mattappan, and Readville, etc. It certainly was faster than trying to pry up Dot Ave from the Lower Mills.

    If you look at the original layout of Ashmont Station (still mostly in-tact prior to recent renovation), the passenger flows were unrivaled. Everything was intended to be a simple cross-the-platform transfer to reach multiple points, all without stepping into the rain. But anyway, now I'm getting away from the topic.

    Curious about this

    I never heard about the High-Speed Line being used to funnel outside streetcars to Ashmont; everything I've seen claims it that it's always been an independent route from Mattapan to Ashmont, no through-running from elsewhere though I suppose one could always transfer. (Unless I just misunderstood you)

    My apologies

    Sorry, I didn't write that very clearly. The streetcars funneled people from those neighborhoods to Ashmont. I had imagined it could have made a nice diversion for streetcars, but like yourself, I've never seen any indication that this was ever the case. The only way trolleys could move between the street network and the high speed line was at Ashmont itself (if I recall correctly), but trolleys could not divert off the street in Mattappan and head to Ashmont on the high speed line from what I can tell.