Moving Massachusetts Forward
On the Trans Blog
MassHighway Building Bridges
Bridge Work in Charlton

MassHighway contractors are on schedule and moving forward with the $4.3 million construction of the Route 1- Newbury Street bridges over Route 62- Maple Street, in Danvers.

In Charlton, Accelerated Bridge Program contract funds allowed quick repair of the structurally-deficient bridge Hammond Hill Road Bridge over the Little River. The bridge reopened less than one month after repairs began.

Salem Commuter Parking
Salem Commuter Line Governor Patrick has announced the Salem commuter parking facility will move forward. The 750-space parking facility to be located at the Salem MBTA commuter rail station will be funded in part by $3 million from the Massachusetts Department of Capital Asset Management. That investment will allow 150 parking spaces to serve the new Essex County Courthouse complex. The balance of the spaces will be available to daily commuters who park and ride the commuter rail to Boston.

The Road to Reform

Accountability is a centerpiece of transportation reform and at the new MassDOT. Going forward we will measure our progress on reform based on the following themes:

  • Creating ONE transportation agency
  • Establishing a culture of innovation and accountability
  • Renewing our focus on customer service
  • Making public and employee safety our top priority.
  • Making decisions that balance the needs of all users, and support stronger, healthier communities

Performance management will be a centerpiece of MassDOT. We will use as a foundation for our efforts an easy-to-use accountability approach that mirrors the MassHighway Scorecard measuring the impact of project delivery streamlining efforts, or "Getting the Job Done," and the Accelerated Bridge Program Scorecard, tracking bridge conditions and project progress in fulfilling Governor Patrick's eight-year, $3 billion program to dramatically reduce the number of structurally-deficient bridges in the Commonwealth.

See how we are doing

Just last week, in another step toward a more open, accountable transportation system the MBTA revealed a new online Scorecard, a monthly report that publicly outlines the performance of the T in key areas including: Ridership, Infrastructure, On-Time Performance, Reliability, and Safety. From questions relating to daily ridership figures to understanding how the T measures on-time performance, customers can now access this information at www.mbta.com. Customers may also share comments and suggestions at scorecard@mbta.com.

Future editions of the T Scorecard will be based in part on issues raised in customer feedback to the MBTA.


EOT Pursues Public-Private Partnerships

Among the goals of the new Massachusetts Department of Transportation, MassDOT, is to leverage transportation projects to spark economic development and encourage private sector investment to support more livable communities.

Executive Office of Transportation Deputy Secretary for Real Estate and Economic Development Peter O' Connor is on the frontlines of that effort, working on redevelopment of state-owned land and property.

O'Connor told the Boston Globe he is working "to find opportunities where there are public assets that arenít being utilized where you can combine them with private investments to make something happen."

Read the Globe profile. Learn more about the transition to MassDOT, effective November 1.


EOT Developers Conference and Challenge

The Executive Office of Transportation (EOT) announced a Developers Conference and Developers Challenge with two winners receiving a free MBTA Charlie Card for a year.

The Conference:

Saturday, November 14th, 11am-4pm
MIT Tang Center (Building E51)
70 Memorial Drive,
Cambridge, MA

Please register and RSVP here.

The Conference is free and open to the public and features transportation and technology speakers and breakout sessions where developers can discuss EOT data and the applications they are working on. The Conference builds on EOTís historic step toward openness by the creation of the EOT Developers Page. A well-known application called UniBus is utilizing Developers data to create an easy-to-use statewide transit scheduler for the iPhone. Massachusetts companies Sparkfish Creative and Wonderland Development have launched iPhone applications to help users navigate the MBTA system.

The Challenge inspires developers to create both applications and data visualizations, submit them to EOT, and release them to the public. The two top submissions will receive a CharlieCard valid for one-year of free travel on the MBTA in addition to recognition at the Conference. The CharlieCard awards are sponsored by MassRIDES, which helps residents reduce commuting costs by encouraging transit use, vanpooling, and carpooling.

The Challenge begins today, and applications can be submitted through November 9th, 2009. The applications will be judged on the quality of design, usability, and convenience.

Find information on the Conference and the Challenge at the EOT Developers Page.


New RMV Electronic Reminder Service

Have trouble remembering? Let us help.

The Registry of Motor Vehicles is reinstating courtesy notices for driver's license and ID renewals, thanks to an innovative reform- a public-private partnership at no cost to taxpayers.

The RMV partnered with a private Massachusetts electronic messaging firm to develop a secure notification service that will alert customers a month before their license expires by email, phone or text message.

The RMV Reminder Service powered by Sendza, Inc. and sponsored by local businesses, will be free of charge to customers while using innovative technology that protects a person's most important identity document against fraud and abuse.

Customers may join the new service through www.mass.gov/rmv and choose to be notified by phone, e-mail, or text message. They must sign up for the service at least 45 days before their license or ID expires and will receive a message at least 30 days before the expiration date that informs the customer whether they can renew online or must visit a branch. Customers will also be notified if their license is in non-renew status because of an outstanding parking ticket or excise bill and must be cleared before they can renew. The notification service includes a strict privacy policy to protect the information and data customers provide.


MassDOT Quick Fact

The new MassDOT will have:

  • 7 tunnel systems
  • 65 lane miles of tunnel roadway
  • 215 tunnel exhaust fans