MassDOT and the MBTA this week held the first in a series of public meetings to consider the future of the proposed Green Line Extension and invite the public to share their ideas about the project.
The GLX project is proposed to extend the MBTA Green Line from a relocated Lechmere Station in East Cambridge to Union Square in Somerville and College Avenue in Medford. The re-evaluation of the project was launched due to significant cost overruns, and the re-evaluation is expected to be completed and submitted to the T’s Fiscal & Management Control Board in May.
The following is the schedule of remaining public meetings:
Wednesday, March 23rd, 5:30pm-6:30pm: Open House. 6:30pm-8:00pm: Presentation and Q&A, Tufts University, 51 Winthrop Street – Medford
Wednesday, April 13th, 5:30pm-6:30pm: Open House. 6:30pm-8:00pm: Presentation and Q&A, Argenziano School, 290 Washington Street – Somerville
Wednesday, April 27th, 5:30pm-6:30pm: Open House. 6:30pm-8:00pm: Presentation and Q&A, St. Anthony’s Parish Hall, 400 Cardinal Medeiros Avenue – Cambridge
Thursday, May 5th, 5:30pm-6:30pm: Open House. 6:30pm-8:00pm: Presentation and Q&A, St. Clement’s Parish Hall, 579 Boston Avenue – Medford
MassDOT and the MBTA’s current re-evaluation of the Green Line Extension project will focus on four key areas: (1) project management; (2) redesign; (3) re-procurement; and (4) the development of a reliable cost estimate and schedule.
Review goals include revising the project schedule and design elements, with reduced capital and overall costs, and new procurement method recommendations. Physical elements of the project under reconsideration include reduced station designs, redesign of vehicle maintenance facility, reconsidering community path options, construction work hour limitations, power signals and retaining and sound walls.
The original project consisted of two distinct branches: a “mainline” branch which would operate within the existing right-of-way of the MBTA Lowell Line, beginning at a relocated Lechmere Station in Cambridge and traveling north to Medford; and a branch line operating within the existing right-of-way of the MBTA Fitchburg Line to Union Square in Somerville. Plans called for seven new stations, including the relocated Lechmere Station. A vehicle storage and maintenance facility would also be constructed. Once completed, trains would operate every five to six minutes in the peak periods, providing service to downtown Boston.
Cancelling the project must remain an option until an affordable, feasible alternative has been identified. Any decision to cancel the project must take into consideration the potential legal exposure to the Commonwealth; and costs that have already been sunk into the project.
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