The T

By - 2/29/16 - 8:34 am
Manual switching at Airport on the Blue Line

The T reports "minor" delays on the Blue Line due to a switch problem. Kate Donaghey watched workers manually operate a switch at Airport. She adds:

Train arrived northbound, pulled up a bit, they switched the tracks and the train came back Bowdoin bound. Waited about 12mins today.

By - 2/29/16 - 7:57 am

MassDOT says reductions in overtime and other costs mean the T should end the current fiscal year $75 million under budget - money that will immediately go towards plugging a budget deficit that starts July 1. Read more.

By - 2/27/16 - 3:10 pm
Man gets a seat on the Red Line

Ari Ofsevit spotted somebody sitting in the most comfortable seat on the Red Line today.

Past self-seaters on the T:
Green Line.
Red Line.

By - 2/27/16 - 8:07 am

The Herald reports two groups submitted bids for an MBTA-owned parcel next to the Mattapan Line station in Mattapan Square. Both are looking at apartments and retail for the 2.5-acre parcel.

By - 2/26/16 - 1:49 pm

Now that they've got the dirtbike situation under control. The Globe reports the T is even planning a public-education campaign about the ban.

Wait, when did this become an issue?

By - 2/25/16 - 1:25 pm
Spitting suspect sought

Transit Police have released a photo of a guy they say spit at a T bus driver on a 442 bus near Central Square in Lynn shortly before 6 p.m. on Feb. 15.

If he looks familiar, contact detectives at 617-222-1050, or send an anonymous text tip to 873873.

By - 2/25/16 - 8:33 am

Some sort of power problem at Back Bay means the T is urging people headed for downtown points to use the Green Line instead. Meanwhile, The Management reports:

Stuck at Aquarium and i can't even see the penguins. Blue Line delay due to "signal problem" at Orient Heights.

By - 2/24/16 - 9:20 pm

Tonight's commuter-rail tale of woe comes from Jennifer Emmaline, who thought her train from Worcester to Boston would leave at 7:50 p.m., only to learn that a) An Amtrak train that got to Union Station, looked around and decided that was as good a place as any to just die and b) The solution turned out to be to connect that train to her train, which would then try to pull it all the way to South Station. Read more.

By - 2/24/16 - 6:48 pm

More signal problems, this time at Alewife. J Patience reports:

I boarded at Park between 6 - 6:05. Now starting to stand by at Harvard. 6:47.

By - 2/24/16 - 10:52 am

The Supreme Judicial Court today ordered a trial for a man charged with reckless endangerment of a child after he was allegedly caught drunkenly stumbling down the Kingston/Plymouth Line with his 11-year-old son.

A district-court judge had tossed the charge - but left standing another criminal complaint for violating a law against walking on train tracks - saying prosecutors had failed to prove that David Coggeshall knew he was putting his son at risk as they ambled down the tracks in 2013.

The state's highest court ruled, in essence: Please. Read more.

By - 2/24/16 - 9:04 am

Shortly before 9 a.m., Lyzard reported:

MBTA is jerking us around on the Longfellow for over 10 minutes .start.. Stop.. Starts. Stops. Riders Ready to puke.

Five minutes later, the T announced "moderate" delays due to signal problems on the bridge and now at least one train is just sitting there.

By - 2/23/16 - 7:46 am

But the State House News Service reports he won't be doing that anymore - he retired.

By - 2/22/16 - 6:56 pm

Just got these alerts from the T within about 30 seconds of each other:

Delay: Haverhill Train 219 (6:20 pm from North Station) is stopped at Melrose Highlands due to a vehicle on the tracks near Greenwood Station.
Delay: Haverhill Train 274 (6:38 pm inbound) will depart Reading Station behind schedule due to a vehicle on the tracks near Greenwood Station.

Wonder if the driver was related to that woman in Andover Sunday morning, or was just another person putting blind faith in their GPS.

By - 2/20/16 - 11:26 am
Levers and interlocking board at South Station's old Tower 1

Some of the levers that used to control the switches at South Station. See it larger.

Thursday's South Station meltdown proved to be the fault of a computerized track-switching system in a building called Tower 1 (and seems Amtrak still is unsure what happened).

Today, Tower 1 is a shed, basically, but it once was an actual three-story tower in the middle of all the tracks funneling towards South Station. Installed in 1899, it handled the more than 700 trains that once came into and left what was once the busiest train station in the country, using hand-cranked levers to control pneumatic tubes that changed the
settings of switches in the station's large "interlocking," where trains could be guided from one set of tracks to another. Read more.

By - 2/19/16 - 11:09 am
Illuminated Government Center station in Boston

The T reports Government Center is still on track to re-open late next month, after two years of renovations.

The T adds the lights are programmable and multi-colored, which could lead to interesting possibilities for concerts and performances on City Hall Plaza.

By - 2/19/16 - 9:06 am

Dave, a Worcester Line rider with an interest in trains, begins to break down what happened with the trains into and out of South Station yesterday: It all involves an Amtrak computer room, called Tower 1 from the days when it was an actual tower with men who moved actual levers to switch trains.

By - 2/19/16 - 7:38 am

Word from Keolis came around 5:40 a.m.

Now about the problems on the Fitchburg and Lowell lines into North Station ...

By - 2/18/16 - 6:08 pm

Delays of ten minutes on all Reading/Haverhill, Fitchburg, and Lowell departures. No reason given though.

By - 2/18/16 - 3:03 pm

This just in from MassDOT:

Amtrak officials notified MassDOT today that the Amtrak signal failure will not be resolved by the start of the evening commute. Because of this Amtrak failure, the only commuter rail trains that will depart from South Station are those that serve the Providence/Attleboro and Stoughton Lines.

MassDOT is urging all other Commuter Rail passengers not to arrive at South Station. Instead, MBTA will post new schedules by 3:30 PM today indicating which trains will depart from the alternative stations. These alternative stations will include JFK/UMASS, Back Bay, Forest Hills, Quincy Center, and Braintree.

The new schedules for today’s commute will be posted on MBTA.com by 3:30 PM today.