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On the Trans Blog
Whittier Bridge Public Meeting

A Public Information Meeting for the Whittier Bridge/I-95 Improvement Project has been set for the following date and location:

Thursday, August 12, 6:30 8:30 PM
Hilton Senior Center
39 Lafayette Road, Salisbury

The purpose of this meeting is to present the public with an update on the environmental analyses for the highway widening and bridge river crossing alternatives that are being evaluated as part of the Draft Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Assessment process. Following the presentation, MassDOT staff will lead a discussion to answer questions and gather public comment on the alternatives. Comments received will be carefully considered as the alternatives evaluation moves forward.

If you have questions or would like more information about the project, please contact Mike ODowd, MassDOT Project Manager, 617-973-7475. To be added to the project email or US Mail distribution lists, please contact Stephanie Boundy by email or by phone at 617-973-8049.

MBTA Bus Routes Real-Time Data Major Expansion

The MBTA has taken the next step in helping bus riders answer the question, "where's the bus?" Building on General Manager Richard Davey's commitment to unlock real-time bus information this summer, the MBTA began releasing data for 118 bus routes in addition to the 17 that already have data. Now, real-time data is available for 135 of the MBTA's 185 bus routes.

This release will allow bus riders on these routes to access real-time information on bus locations and arrival predictions for all bus stops. Data will be accessible through 3rd party applications. Popular applications include:

Catch the Bus for iPhone and Android

MassTransit for iPhone

BostonBusMap for Android

AnyStop for Android

myTransit for iPhone

SMS service Just Hop On

Many other applications can be found by searching "MBTA" in your phone's app store.

If you are a software developer interested in building an app with the data please visit our Developers Webpage.

Weekend Farmers Markets

MassDOT's annual Farmer's Market Program continues through fall 2010.

This weekend's Farmers Markets include:

  • Lee East on Friday, Saturday & Sunday from 9:30 PM - 5:30 PM.
  • Charlton West on Friday, Saturday & Sunday 9 AM - 4 PM.
  • Charlton East on Friday, Saturday & Sunday from 9 AM - 4 PM.
  • Ludlow West on Friday & Saturday from 9 AM - 4 PM.
  • Framingham on Friday, Saturday & Sunday from 10 AM - 4 PM.

Local farmers or customers who want more information are asked to contact program coordinator Dave Fenton at dave.fenton@state.ma.us or 413-572-3171.

The Road to Reform

MassDOT Crews Work 24/7, Repair and Reopen I-93 Northbound

All four lanes of Interstate 93 Northbound in Medford reopened in time for Thursday's morning commute, thanks to the non-stop, overnight efforts of MassDOT's District 4 crew and other employees.

Pothole repairs were necessary in several sections of the bridge deck on both Tuesday and Wednesday. Crews began concrete replacement to repair the last group of potholes just before 10:00pm Wednesday and completed repairs by 4am Thursday morning.

MassDOT is investing more than $16 million in ongoing I-93 reconstruction of bridge decks and pavement and will utilize Governor Patrick's historic eight-year, $3 billion Accelerated Bridge Program to speed replacement of the 14 bridge decks in the Medford area of I-93.


Green Line Extension Project Milestone

Posted by: Kate Fichter, Green Line Extension Project Manager

We are pleased to tell you about an important milestone for the Green Line Extension project.

The comment period for the Final Environmental Impact Report (FEIR) for the Green Line Extension project ended on July 23. The Secretary of Energy & Environmental Affairs received more than 400 comment letters from a wide variety of interested individuals and organizations. You can view the letters here. We are grateful for the continuing public interest and participation in the project, and the many ideas shared by commenters.

The Secretary has accepted the FEIR and issued a Certificate to guide the next phases of the Green Line Extension project. The FEIR Certificate can be viewed here.

We will now initiate Preliminary Engineering and will be working with the public and the corridor municipalities on station design issues in a series of public workshops and other events in the fall. We encourage everyone to attend and participate.

The first meeting of the Green Line Extension Design Working Group will take place:

August 9th, 6 pm to 7:30 pm, Tufts University building, 51 Winthrop Street, Medford.

The building, a converted church, can be reached via MBTA bus routes 80, 94 and 96. Parking is available on Boston Avenue, along Capen Street Extension, in the Dowling Parking Garage and surface lots near Miller Hall and Hill Hall (Tufts University buildings). Handicapped parking is available next to the building. The public is welcome to attend the meeting. Public seating will be available on a first-come/first-served basis and public comments will be accepted for a limited time at the end of each meeting.

More information about the Green Line Extension project, including information about upcoming public meetings, can be found on the web. If you have questions, please contact Kate Fichter, Project Manager for the Green Line Extension, at katherine.fichter@state.ma.us.


Boost for Cape Cod Transportation Options

Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority (CCRTA) Administrator Thomas S. Cahir, joined by MassDOT Secretary Jeff Mullan and Rail & Transit Administrator and MBTA General Manager Richard A. Davey, this week presented a State Mobility Assistance Program vehicle to the Bourne Council on Aging.

The Federal Transit Administration awarded the CCRTA a grant covering 80% of the cost of vans for Cape Cod Councils on Aging, with the MassDOT Mobility Assistance Program funding the remaining 20%. The fully-accessible equipment provides transportation of elders and individuals with disabilities at no direct cost to the senior population. The CCRTA as grant recipient will ensure that the vehicle is maintained.

The Mobility Assistance Program provides capital assistance to public agencies for the purchase of vehicles and related equipment to be used in the provision of transportation services to the elderly, persons with disabilities, and families transitioning from public assistance to employment for whom existing public and/or private mass transportation is unavailable, insufficient, or inappropriate. Learn more about the Mobility Assistance Program.


MassDOT Transportation Round Table

Posted by Loretta Girard Doughty, P.E. President, WTS-Boston and Structural Section Manager, HDR Engineering, Inc.

We are fortunate, in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, to have a Secretary of Transportation, Jeffrey Mullan, whose goal is to affect change within the transportation agency. It has been an enormous undertaking for the state to combine many transportation agencies and services into one agency, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT). As part of the agency transformation, Secretary Mullan has assembled a Transportation Round Table (Round Table) team to help make a better transportation agency for not only the Commonwealth, but also for its employees.

This Round Table team is comprised of MassDOT employees and transportation industry stakeholders. Seventeen employees of MassDOT, chosen from a pool of applicants, were selected for this Round Table, and represent different modes of transportation, different departments within MassDOT (Highway, RMV, MBTA, etc.), and varying levels of positions within MassDOT. The stakeholders represent individuals from outside of the agency.

I am pleased that, as WTS-Boston President, I was asked to be part of this Round Table as a stakeholder. The goal of the Round Table is to identify issues/opportunities, and discuss and propose solutions to MassDOT executives.

The Transportation Round Table will use employee and stakeholder knowledge and experience to promote a diverse, engaged, and inclusive workforce. It is a forum:

  • To identify and discuss critical issues, where colleagues are welcome to help develop and recommend solutions to MassDOT leaders.
  • To foster a workplace environment where employees are treated fairly and with respect on a consistent basis.
  • To support transportation reform and integration into one transportation system.
  • To inspire an empowered culture where its leaders listen and collaborate with employees to achieve real and effective change.

The Round Table members meet once a month for two hours to brainstorm issues/opportunities, prioritize, identify root causes, identify multiple options to address, develop recommendations and possible actions to address, and present recommendations to MassDOT executives. The week following this meeting, there is an open forum Round Table Meeting with the Secretary, and his executive leadership team. The Round Table members discuss those items vetted out in the previous Round Table meeting and discuss them with the executive team. This meeting is open to all MassDOT employees and is an opportunity for them to hear the discussions between the Round Table members and the MassDOT executive team, and then have an opportunity to participate and voice their opinion and comment on the discussion. So far, it has been a great experience to be part of this initiative, and I am proud that the Secretary and his executive team felt it was important to have WTS-Boston represented in this Transportation Round Table, to hear our opinions and be a voice for women in transportation.


MassDOT Board August Public Meeting

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation Board of Directors will hold its next public business meeting on Wednesday, August 11, 1:00pm, in the MBTA Board Room, Suite 3910, State Transportation Building, Boston. The MBTA Board will meet first at 1pm, followed by the MassDOT Board. All meetings are open to the public.

The meeting schedule is available on the MassDOT website.