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Newtonville commuter-rail station closed 'until further notice'
By adamg on Tue, 10/22/2019 - 11:19pm
The MBTA reports it's closed the Newtonville station on the Worcester Line "until further notice" because of some problems with the stairs up to the street that require immediate attention. The T says riders should head to West Newton instead - but will provide a shuttle bus 20 minutes before a scheduled train arrival from Newtonville to West Newton for people who don't get word in time to make the switch.
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Newton commuter rail stations are the worst
Totally inaccessible, with long stair climbs and platforms right next to the roaring Mass Pike.
They may be unpleasant
But commuter rail is an important transit option for this community. Tons of "transit oriented development" being built at Newtonville. I'm hoping they solve this problem quickly!
"Station" is being very
"Station" is being very generous.
Especially when you consider the actual station buildings at Newtonville and Auburndale (and maybe West Newton) — think Newton Center and Highlands on the D and the former station that's now Regina pizza — that were torn down for the Pike.
No CR stations have a building along the routes.
North, south and back bay, sure. Once you leave the city all “stations” are just platforms w sketchy access. The stations that were torn down for the pike were torn down everywhere else. Er, I mean damn our car-centric society!
Some of them have station
Some of them have station buildings. 128, Woburn-Anderson, Worcester, Providence come to mind.
There are a few exceptions
Actually most stations outside the city weren't torn down. The Wellesleys, for example, and even the old station buildings at Ashland and Westborough (although they're not exactly near the new park-and-ride stations).
There are many other stations with bona fide indoor waiting areas: Providence, Mansfield, Route 128, Wedgmere (I think), Worcester, Salem, Lowell, Anderson-Woburn, and plenty others with old stations but that aren't open to the public. But other than the Turnpike, many weren't torn down.
"...right next to the roaring
"...right next to the roaring Mass Pike."
Oddly enough, they decided to put the stations and staircases next to the railroad tracks. Funny how that works.
They put the Mass Pike next to the railroad tracks
is the more historically accurate way to say this.
I have always wondered why the Newton Corner station was discontinued at that time, and never replaced. It's a much busier and more built-up place than Newtonville or West Newton.
At the time the Turnpike
At the time the Turnpike extension opened in 1965, commuter rail on the Framingham line had been reduced by the New York Central to just four trains inbound in the morning and 4 trains back in the afternoon. The New York Central was looking to abandon all service and it was not yet clear if the then newly formed MBTA was going to step in and subsidize the service or not. Those new replacement "stations" in Newton were very spartan and not built to last, as it didn't look like the trains were going to be around much longer when they opened. The new express buses to Boston that started running in 1967 (today's Route 504) were much faster then (less traffic) and were probably thought at the time to be a very good alternative to the train service.
Ridership in 1972
1972 ridership on the Worcester Line was something like 600 per day.
Today it's something like 18,000.
Pike traffic has gone up a bit, too. I would guess that in 1972 there was minimal traffic on the Turnpike.
Newton Corner had the A line
Newton Corner had the A line and express buses. There was arguably less of a need.
If the T ever decides to rapid transit-ify the inner Worcester line though, Newton Corner would absolutely warrant a station.
Trains make a lot of noise
Noise pollution wise the train system and the Turnpike are similar in decibel level if not frequency. Putting the two together makes sense.
The South Attleboro MBTA station is much worse
When Attleboro and Pawtucket contact MassDOT about the station. Silence
The station may be worse
But it probably doesn't take a long flight of rickety wooden stairs to get to it.
I've used that station. It seemed OK to me
One of the stairways is under repair, but other than that, I didn't see any obvious problems. Certainly a lot better than standing on a tiny platform sandwiched against the Mass Pike.
Perfect timing. Day of the Commuter "Rail Vision" Fantasy Event
The same day the T holds an event to talk about rail fantasies costing up to 30 billion dollars, a commuter rail station goes down due to poor maintenance. The transit gods are trying to send the DOT and T a message. Change your ways.
I can already give you a synopsis of tonights RailVision meeting
TransitFanboys aka TransitMatters will overwhelm the meeting and demand that the Commonwealth spend billions on their poorly conceived Regional Rail concept. Someone will bring up the Newtonville station issue. Everyone pauses for a few seconds. TransitMatters continues on with their fantasy pitches. The end.
Ah, yes, poorly-conceived
Remember when people said the Big Dig was poorly-conceived. And we spent a lot of money on it and … it is certainly a net benefit.
Well, it's full. We have to do something. What's your idea, Professor?
As someone who did attend,
As someone who did attend, neither of those things happened last night. Newtonville wasn't mentioned at all.
The discussion was only hijacked once, and that was by a former state rep to promote the NSRL.
Accessibility is important.
Accessibility is important. Besides that, I care little about the station amenities as long as the service is good.
The American way is to spend huge amounts of money on fancy stations, and then run very little service to them.
Of course, these stations have poor amenities *and* terrible service.
20 minutes before scheduled arrival.
"will provide a shuttle bus 20 minutes before a scheduled train arrival from Newtonville to West Newton for people who don't get word in time to make the switch."
Very convenient workaround for the zero people who get to the commuter rail stop 20 minutes early.
secretary of transportation uses the newtonville stop
apparently it was good enough for her !!! or is management completely blind
If it isn't a Conservation Law Foundation project, it's dead
That's the rule under Pollack since 2015. What you linked to is an old PR article when everyone was talking about Pollack, a Conservation Law Foundation advocate with no managerial or transportation experience, being made secretary of transportation. Pollack is Baker's own DeVos. A rich family donor with a personal agenda. Between 2015 and 2019, every Conservation Law Foundation Project (South Coast Rail, Blue Hill Ave Station, Green Line Extension, etc.) was/is fully funded and moving at top speed. Every non-CLF project (West Station, AFC 2.0, S-O-G-R maintenance, etc.) have been cut or frozen. Maybe a few Newtonville riders will finally meet up with Pollack's family and say "ok, c'mon, enough"
Just set in 20 minutes earlier.
At least there are bus
At least there are bus options in Newtonville, 553/554, 556.
Apparently it was a stair fail
A coworker uses that stop - just arrived at work via Lyft and said that apparently someone fell through the stairs. Not for the first time...
I assumed the stairs were concrete. Are they metal?
They are wood!
Made of 2x6 decking boards ... looney tunes.
That’s all folks!
That’s all folks!
Nope wood! Even better, and
Nope wood! Even better, and recently replaced with new boards too, though the underlying supports were not changed which are a mix of wood and nicely rusted metal.
World class, baby!
World class, baby!
Wood on metal supports: https
Wood on metal supports: https://goo.gl/maps/bUdz1HC4q8GHSAxb7
What s bunch of Pollacky
If the secretary actually rides the rail from Newtonville station she would have noticed that the stairs were crumbling. She like all the other managers at the T don't ride they drive fancy SUV'S provided free of charge by the state. I hope everyone at the T who gets a take home car pays the proper taxes.
Does Pollack have a Presidential style SUV and T Police driver?
I'm not sure about Pollack but past MA Transportation Secretaries have been chauffeured around in a Presidential style SUV with an armed MBTA Police officer as driver.
I was right!
Was at this station for the first time with a coworker last Friday. Besides the inaccessibility and feeling like we needed to jump after the last step getting off the train, we noticed the stairs were particularly rickety.