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Fenway

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Sheesh, Boston is really falling apart (granted, Chicago shut down our Green Line for a renovation project, but it wasn't nearly in such dire circumstances as Boston and it's mostly paralleled by other lines and was planned in advance).
 

Fenway

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It never ends



About 300 Green Line passengers were forced to get off their trains and walk along the tracks because of a power problem during the evening commute Friday.

The MBTA says three trains got stuck in the tunnels between the Hynes and Kenmore stops in Back Bay by Fenway Park.

No injuries were reported.



 
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Fenway

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The local news media has yet to look at the Achilles heel which is North Station because the Green Line will be closed at the same time.

I don't envy people from Maine taking the Downeaster who most likely will be unaware that trying to get to either South Station or Back Bay to continue on Amtrak will be a gigantic headache. Haymarket being closed is another major chokepoint. The other unknown is Lyft and Uber surge pricing.





This twitter video has gone viral and sums up the apprehension of the next month.

 

JoshP

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I didn't know about this until just moments ago since I was planning a 30 day travel in east coast and doing some filming of public transit for my youtube channel so now I think I'll have to avoid Boston for now. This is really shame. Maybe the T should learn how MTA done like weekend shutdown only and it works well, no problems.
 

Fenway

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I know Anna Seda and those musicians.
They honestly had no idea it would blow up like this.

The next months in Boston are going to be a ****show. Probably the biggest transport disaster in the country atm.

@Tlcooper93

What boggles the mind is the core tunnels downtown are all over 100 years old and they are fine.

The MTA did a decent job with extending the Blue Line to Revere and the Green Line to Riverside in the 50s.

But in 1964 the MTA was morphed into the MBTA that was designed to save commuter rail.

The MBTA cut corners on the Red Line extension to Quincy in 1971 and the replacement of the Charlestown Elevated in 1975 and that is the core of the issues today. The tunnel from Harvard to Alewife that was completed in 1985 has also aged badly. The replacement of the Washington Street elevated in 1987 has aged better.
 

daybeers

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I wonder if and/or when this problem will be hitting the airlines, trucking, and freight rail industry.
Where are you getting the idea this isn't already happening?

It's weird how over the past few years several major cities have had to shut down their systems, at least in part/some lines, because the deferred maintenance or workforce was so bad that it impacted safety.
Not weird IMO considering the way we fund and manage our infrastructure.
 

Fenway

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Boston, MA
It's weird how over the past few years several major cities have had to shut down their systems, at least in part/some lines, because the deferred maintenance or workforce was so bad that it impacted safety.

In Boston, you can trace everything back to the 'Big Dig'


The T in 1985 was in decent shape except for the Green Line which was hampered by the Boeing LRV debacle.




Meanwhile, the T was restoring the Old Colony commuter rail south of Boston that the New Haven RR killed in 1959, which became another money pit.

30 years ago I used to commute into Boston with a Zone 6 monthly pass that cost $112 - today it costs $340 but using the Federal Reserve inflation tracker it should cost $235.

The T and its predecessors have been inconsistent in updating the rolling stock on the heavy rail lines

Orange Line - The 1100s were retired after only 24 years in 1981. Red Line - The 1400s were retired after 31 years. In both cases, the MTA went with a Pullman-Standard concept that a PCC design could work with heavy rail.

The Orange Line should have been included with the Blue Line contract with Siemens in 2008 but..................

The Red Line needs to see the 1500s and 1600s be condemned now. They have served the community well but they are 52 years old.
 
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This page has links to PDFs of the full 90-page report and special directives:
From a quick read of the Safety Management Inspection report, it seems the main problem is that they don't have enough workers to handle both the regular operations and maintenance work and all the new capital projects they're doing. They have the money budgeted for the additional workers, but they're having trouble hiring them. It seems like there are some structural reasons for the shortage, such as a too-large contingent of their workforce being at or near retirement age. There may also be some cultural or management issues with the way they handle new hires, such as a preference to hire from within, and a system where new workers are essentially part-time trainees for two years or so working at a totally inadequate rate of pay for a city as expensive as Boston. This might tend to discourage people from applying for the available jobs.

I would think that a lot of the ultimate cause of the problem is political -- The report says that MBTA appropriations were cut a few years ago, which I suspect means that hiring was curtailed, and staffing levels declined due to attrition. Then they've all of a sudden got a big influx of cash which includes the capital projects, but they can't spend it effectively fast enough. The politicians who appropriate the money like to see the capital projects, heck, they like to come to the opening ceremonies and take credit for the shiny new toy, but regular operations and needed maintenance aren't as glamorous. And, of course, given then diverse interests of people across the state, even a small one like Massachusetts, the politics of spending priorities can change from year to year, which might explain why MBTA was starved of cash one year, and then dumped on with more than they could spend the next.
 
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