Governor Deval Patrick today announced the extension of Silver Line service to connect South Station and the Seaport District with East Boston and Chelsea and also announced funding for construction of the Chelsea Greenway.
“Growth requires investment, and connecting the people of Chelsea directly to the airport, Seaport District and South Station, accompanied by new greenway space, will bring new opportunities for the residents of these communities,” said Governor Patrick. “If we want to expand opportunity in our Commonwealth, this is what government must do and do well.”
The Silver Line Gateway Expansion will create a new branch of the MBTA Silver Line Service that will connect South Station and the Seaport District with East Boston and Chelsea. This service is projected to carry 9,000 riders per day with an estimated travel time of just 15 to 19 minutes from the Seaport to Chelsea, connecting thousands of residents north of downtown Boston with work and play opportunities in the rapidly growing Seaport District. The Silver Line Gateway Expansion will also include the modernization of the Chelsea Commuter Rail Station, which will be relocated to Everett Avenue as part of a new multimodal Silver Line/Commuter Rail Station that will be fully accessible and ADA compliant. In addition, MassDOT will begin reconstruction on the Washington Avenue Bridge.
After incorporating feedback from community meetings and other stakeholder events into route planning, service will follow the same routing as Silver Line service in South Boston before taking the Williams Tunnel and will stop at Airport Station on the Blue Line. Service will then follow the Coughlin Bypass Road and the Chelsea Street Bridge to the new Grand Junction busway, with four new stations, Eastern Avenue, Box District, Downtown Chelsea and Mystic Mall. The project is will cost an estimated $82.5 million, with the bulk of funding, $20 million, being dedicated to the new Chelsea commuter rail station. Service is expected to begin in late 2015.
“Bringing Silver Line service to Chelsea will provide an even more convenient and cost-effective route for its residents and neighbors to connect with the vibrant opportunity growing in the Seaport District and the City of Boston,” said MassDOT Secretary & CEO Richard A. Davey.