The City of Somerville and the MBTA are hosting a Green Line Extension (GLX) public meeting regarding the Medford Street Bridge Construction on Thursday, July 31, 2014 at 6 PM. It will be held at the Public Safety Building (220 Washington Street) in Somerville.
GLX construction is underway and will involve periodic traffic impacts near the Medford Street Rail Bridge for the next six to eight months. The MBTA and the City of Somerville will present the construction schedule for the Rail Bridge area, and all associated traffic diversions at this meeting. Also, the GLX team along with Barletta Heavy Division, Inc., Phase 1 contractor for the GLX Project, will present other information followed by a Q&A.
For more information about the GLX project, please visit this link or email the GLX team at: email@example.com.
When: Thursday July 31, 6:00 PM
Where: Public Safety Building, 220 Washington Street, Somerville, MA
The MBTA will hold a public hearing to review an Equivalent Facilitation Request by the Green Line Extension (GLX) on Thursday, July 10, 2014. The hearing will be held at the Dr. Albert F. Argenziano School at Lincoln Park, 290 Washington Street, Somerville, MA from 6:00 pm-8:00 pm in the cafeteria.
The Equivalent Facilitation Request is required as part of the project’s application for a Full Funding Grant Agreement with the Federal Transit Administration (FTA).
“Equivalent facilitation” permits the FTA and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations to accommodate innovation in accessible design. It allows the development of improvements in vehicle, facility, or equipment design that provides for equal or greater accessibility, but would not strictly meet the required design standards. Equivalent facilitation is covered under federal law by 49 CFR Part 37.
Increasing accessibility is a key goal of the GLX project, but due to sloping roadway conditions near several of the stations, there are a few isolated instances where station designs currently do not comply with design standards created by the ADA. In order to deviate from these standards, the MBTA must do so in a way that provides equivalent or greater access, and receive a “determination of equivalent facilitation” from the FTA administrator.
This hearing is an opportunity for the public to review and comment on the MBTA’s application for a determination of equivalent facilitation before the MBTA formally submits it to the FTA. A draft of the application is available for review on this link.
For more information about the GLX project, please visit this link or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
When: Thursday July 10, 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Where: Cafeteria at Argenziano School at Lincoln Park, 290 Washington Street, Somerville, MA
The Green Line Extension is seeking public art submissions for its first three stations, including the redesigned Lechmere station. Image via Wikimedia Commons.
The first three stations on the new Green Line Extension—Lechmere, Union Square, and Washington St.—are approaching the 60% design threshold, and now, MassDOT is looking for local artists to help make these stations beautiful. Artists are encouraged to submit their designs for public art at the new Green Line stations, and everyone who’s interested should strongly consider attending a prequalification/information session on Thursday, February 6 at 5pm at the GLX Project Office (100 Summer St., Suite 250, Boston). You can read the full Request for Qualifications here.
All applicants will need to apply through MassDOT’s online platform. All submissions are due by noon on Thursday, February 20. With the vibrant arts communities in Cambridge and Somerville, I know our local artists will come up with some brilliant designs!
An 1871 work by Cantabrigian Winslow Homer, subtitled “Oh, Ain’t It Cold!” Image via Wikimedia Commons.
Temperatures are expected to rise this weekend as the polar vortex remembers why it’s called a “polar” vortex in the first place. That’s good news for the folks working on the Longfellow Bridge, because they’ll be working hard this weekend during one of the project’s planned service diversions.
As with previous weekend diversions, the only motorized vehicles allowed on the bridge will be MBTA buses running between Kendall and Park St. stations. The detours for motorists remain the same. Here’s a map of those detours, and you can always find more resources at MassDOT’s Longfellow Bridge page.
The Green Line Extension is committed to working with small and disadvantaged businesses to build and redesign seven stations, including Lechmere. Visit tomorrow’s informational meeting at 10 Park Plaza in Boston to learn more. Image via Wikimedia Commons.
The Green Line Extension is an enormous project, and the work will include everything from demolition to electrical, plumbing to roofing, concrete, steel, glass, track, HVAC and more. The MBTA has pledged to work with locally owned small businesses and DBEs for the Green Line Extension, and tomorrow, local business owners can meet face-to-face with the MBTA and the project’s general contractor at a meeting at MassDOT headquarters (10 Park Plaza, Boston) from 3:30-5:30pm.
To attend, interested contractors and vendors must register by emailing Mark Smith at WSKdbe@jfwhite.com. The Green Line Extension is an incredible business opportunity for workers and businesses in Cambridge and Somerville, and I strongly encourage all interested contractors to attend.
Mayor Curtatone speaks as Governor Patrick and others look on at last year’s Green Line Extension groundbreaking ceremony. Image via Wikimedia Commons.
The MBTA is putting together a panel of citizens to advise on the final design and construction issues associated with the Green Line Extension. Members of the panel—known as the Construction Working Group—will represent their neighborhoods and serve as a communications link between neighbors and the T.
Since this initiative is all about neighborhood engagement, the Construction Working Group is seeking applicants who live within a mile of the Green Line Extension. The Group’s seats will be apportioned based on the Green Line’s new stops, with one representative each from the neighborhoods surrounding Lechmere, College Ave., and Union Square stations (Gilman Square and Ball Square will be represented by two seats each).
The Working Group will meet every few months to make sure the Green Line Extension construction happens as smoothly as possible. To apply, just fill out this form and send it to Regan Checcio by Friday, December 13.
A photo from the early 20th century showing the Longfellow (then Cambridge) Bridge’s arches under construction. Image via Wikimedia Commons.
Cars and MBTA Red Line trains won’t cross the Longfellow Bridge this weekend, part of a planned service diversion associated with the bridge’s landmark rehabilitation project. Instead, buses will run between Kendall/MIT and Park Street stations. Pedestrians will be able to cross the bridge as they always have, but cyclists will be asked to walk their bikes across the river. There will also be alternating lane closures on Memorial Drive eastbound this weekend.
The detours for motorists remain the same as they were in previous weekend diversions. Here’s a map of those detours, but you can always find more resources at MassDOT’s Longfellow Bridge page.
Buses like this one will run between the Kendall Square and Park Street Red Line stops for the next two weekends. Image via Wikimedia Commons.
For the next two weekends, MBTA buses will be the only vehicles allowed on the Longfellow Bridge. Boston-bound vehicles should follow this detour, while Cambridge-bound traffic should follow this detour. If you’re a cyclist, this applies to you too, as police will be on hand to ask cyclists to walk their bikes across the bridge. Pedestrians, on the other hand, can cross the bridge as they normally would. I’d also like to take this opportunity to remind you that there’s one more weekend closing in 2013, on November 23-24.
Why the complete shutdown of traffic on the bridge? In short, construction crews need to work close to the Red Line tracks, and it’s not safe to operate trains that close to workers.
As always, you can see MBTA service disruptions in real time with Service Alerts, and if you have any questions about the project, you can call the DOT’s dedicated Longfellow Bridge hotline at 617-519-9892.
The Longfellow Bridge will remain open to car traffic and Red Line trains next weekend. Image via Wikimedia Commons.
The MBTA has announced that a planned weekend diversion of Red Line and car traffic from the Longfellow Bridge has been cancelled, and a subsequent planned diversion has been postponed. In layman’s terms, that means cars and Red Line trains will continue to travel over the bridge next weekend, September 14-15. It also means that the diversion planned for the weekend of October 19-20 will be postponed to the weekend before Thanksgiving, November 23-24.
As always, you can find more information on the Longfellow Bridge project and traffic management plans at MassDOT. For questions, to report issues and concerns related to construction, or to be added to the project email distribution list, please call the project hotline at 617-519-9892 or email email@example.com. You can also receive MBTA alerts via Twitter and Facebook.
We’re #1! We’re #1! Image via Wikimedia Commons.
We expect a certain level of excellence with anything designated “#1,” and our bus routes are no exception. When its functioning properly, a good bus system can save time, money, and our environment. But the MBTA’s #1 bus, which runs from Harvard Square down to Dudley Station in Roxbury, carries more than 1,200 people every day, and we all agree that it’s in need of some improvements. To create a more seamless daily commute, the MBTA is updating the timing and infrastructure for 15 key bus routes, including the #1. You can read all about the larger Key Bus Routes Improvement Program here, but I’d like to focus on the changes to the Cambridge portion of the #1 bus route.
The funding for these route improvements comes in part from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, better known as “the stimulus.” The MBTA is eliminating the 15 least-used stops on these key routes, including three serviced by the #1: Memorial Drive (inbound only), Clinton St. (outbound only), and Landsdowne/Front St. (inbound and outbound).
Equally important, the MBTA is improving several stops by adding benches, shelters, pavement markings, and more:
- The Albany St. inbound stop will see its driveway eliminated and its sidewalk rebuilt.
- A shelter, a bench, and pavement markings will be added at Harvard’s Johnston Gate.
- The Pleasant St. stop will be lengthened and better defined with pavement markings.
- The Hancock/Sellers St. inbound stop will be lengthened and given new benches and pavement markings, while the Sellers St. stop will be eliminated to improve traffic flows.
Cambridge’s improved #1 bus route is scheduled to be fully complete by this fall.