A report by several do-gooder groups says the state needs to do more to improve public transit inside the core of the state's economy - Boston and the other communities clustered around it within and along 128.
The report, by A Better City, with funding from the Barr Foundation and the Boston Foundation, comes just two days after state officials re-affirmed their commitment to building a new commuter-rail line between Boston and Fall River.
Although the impending new cars on the Red and Orange Lines, when paired with signal improvements, will dramatically increase capacity on those lines - 50% on the Red Line and 30% on the Orange - the rapidly growing 20 "core communities" of the greater Boston area need far more to keep the region growing as the state's economic engine, the report says, estimating good public transit pays for itself several times over, through such things as reduced travel times, crashes and vehicular emissions
One possible solution: Purchasing new commuter-rail cars with their own diesel engines, which would allow for subway-like "urban rail" service on current rail lines. The Patrick administration had proposed these; the idea was one of the first things Charlie Baker killed when he became governor.
The report also calls for development of "bus rapid transit" corridors, similar to the theoretical Silver Line "rapid transit" service between Dudley Square and downtown.
BRT could connect places like Forest Hills, Blue Hill Avenue, Dudley, the Longwood Medical Area, Kendall, Lechmere, Everett's Lower Broadway and the Seaport.
The complete report (7.5M PDF).