Sunday, October 15, 2017

MassDOT To Host North South Rail Link Public Meeting

The MBTA operates two largely separate commuter rail systems, divided by a one-mile gap between North and South Stations. This gap limits connectivity between rail systems to the north and south, including the MBTA and Amtrak, and has prompted interest over the years in linking the systems. A North-South Rail Link is considered to be a possible solution to alleviate traffic in the Seaport / Fort Point to/from North Station.

MassDOT is undertaking a Feasibility Reassessment for the North South Rail Link Project to update the prior work and determine if further technical and financial analysis is warranted. 

MassDOT is hosting a public meeting on: 

MassDOT – North South Rail Link Public Meeting
Tuesday, October 17, 2017
6:30 – 8:30 PM
Atlantic Wharf, Fort Point Room
290 Congress Street

The primary objectives of the North-South Rail Link Feasibility Reassessment are as follows:

  • Identify any significant changes to the context within which the NSRL would be implemented, such as demographic shifts, new transportation technologies and trends, and changes to the built environment.

  • Determine the major elements of the NSRL necessary to allow for an assessment of costs and benefits (two versus four tracks, whether or not to include a Central Station, the location of the north portal, as well as station and headhouse locations).

  • Identify a Right of Way envelope that could be used to inform future development plans in Boston, Cambridge, and potentially other impacted municipalities.

  • Develop an order of magnitude cost estimate, assuming the initial use of dual-mode locomotives allows the project to advance without full electrification of the commuter rail system. This cost estimate will be informed by recent experience in rail tunnel construction (both international and domestic) and industry best practices.

  • Estimate the benefits of NSRL, including ridership growth, increased system capacity, operational efficiencies, air quality improvements, and the creation of new redevelopment opportunities.
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