STEP is a community group dedicated to improving transportation in Somerville, MA. We advocate for the Green Line extension, a more livable city, and public health issues.
“A remarkable turnaround for Green Line extension” (CommonWealth Magazine)
“The idea that extending the Green Line from Lechmere into Somerville and Medford could come in under budget is somewhat remarkable given its tangled and tortured history. In its early stages, the price tag of the project ballooned from $2 billion to $3 billion and forced state transportation officials to redesign and revamp the project to eliminate roughly $1 billion in costs.”
“Somerville — which will see the percentage of residents within a half-mile of a transit stop increase from 20 percent to 80 percent when GLX service begins — has seen its old, blue-collar reputation transformed by an influx of young professionals and new development in the years since state officials first committed to the long-delayed project in the 1990s.
‘I think it’s fair to say the demographics of the neighborhoods encompassing GLX have changed,’ [Lynsey] Heffernan [the T’s director of policy and strategic planning] said.”
Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley
State Reps Christine Barber, Mike Connolly
Mayor Joe Curtatone
City Councillors Matt McLaughlin (Ward 1), Jesse Clingan (Ward 4)
…to demand that MassDOT prioritize the safety of people over the speed of cars.
Tell MassDOT to:
Meet at the corner of McGrath Hwy. and Broadway at the former gas station lot (empty lot across from Foss Park). Attendees must follow Somerville’s Covid-19 mask and social distancing policy.
Organized by Somerville Alliance for Safe Streets (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Good news from the MBTA: General Manager Steve Poftak revealed at the March 29 MBTA board meeting that the Green Line construction is on schedule and that the Union Square branch will likely open in October, with the other stations along the Medford line opening in December.
Edward Orde on Twitter noticed that the MBTA map at the Ruggles station already includes the Green Line Extension:
The new map also shows that the Riverside “D” branch will run to Union Square and the Heath Street “E” branch will run to Medford.
In a statement, MBTA officials wrote that “this GLX Art Enrichment Program seeks to contribute to the vibrancy of the GLX communities by investing in the success of local artists… The goal is to enhance existing station elements to create a warm and welcoming environment in key areas experienced by the riding public, to both unify and differentiate stations, and to enhance the connection between the station and the community.”
Can’t wait for the Green Line Extension to open? Curious how the construction is going? Now you can watch via several live cameras positioned along the line.
Here’s a camera near Ball Square:
We in Somerville Transportation Equity Partnership (STEP) can appreciate that the MBTA is going through difficult financial stresses due to the loss of ridership during the COVID-19 pandemic. And, that like other transit systems across the US, the agency is trying to find ways to stem the continuing loss in revenue through the proposed Forging Ahead plan. However, we are alarmed about the harm those cuts will do regionally both during the pandemic and long term.
The current challenges transit-dependent front-line workers face are enormous and must be met. In the near term, front line workers throughout the metro area who rely on the MBTA to get to work, already commute in a stressful, potentially hazardous environment, often working late hours and taking multiple modes of transit. The proposed service cuts will disproportionately affect those workers, who don’t have jobs that can be done from home. The fact that the buses and subway cars aren’t crowded currently is a good thing to minimize the spread of the virus.