The Blue Line’s Rough Ride Will Continue One More Week
The troubled saga of the T’s Blue Line closure will last one more week after reports of at least one derailment inside the harbor tunnel’s work zones emerged yesterday.
On Thursday, the MBTA announced that its suspension of Blue Line service between the Airport station and downtown Boston will extend one more week, through Tuesday, May 17, with train service expected to resume on Wednesday, May 18.
“Due to the complicated area of track in the diversion area, a construction tool cart derailed near Airport station earlier this week. There were no injuries. The process to re-rail the tool cart earlier this week and make other repairs while continuing to finish scheduled work means additional time is needed to safely complete the project,” according to a statement from the MBTA released on Thursday.
Yesterday, Taylor Dolven of the Boston Globe reported that the T has reported not one, but two derailment incidents involving rail maintenance vehicles to the Federal Transit Administration in the past week.
Meanwhile, shuttle bus and ferry service will continue to operate between downtown and East Boston, although riders have complained that the buses suffer from severe traffic congestion and long lines at stations. Riders can find details at mbta.com/harbortunnel.
The closure of the Blue Line’s harbor tunnel – one of the principal transportation connections to and from East Boston – started on Monday, April 25, and was initially scheduled to end by Monday, May 8.
Blue Line Reminder: Shuttle buses replace train service between Airport and Government Center from the start of service today, April 25, through May 8 for harbor tunnel repair work. More: https://t.co/5XDoVE5gYR pic.twitter.com/AOST8t14ef
— MBTA (@MBTA) April 25, 2022
But when May 8 actually came, the T announced that the closure would last one more week, through Friday; yesterday’s announcement pushes the re-opening of the tunnel back once again, to May 18.
The service suspension also took riders and many local officials by surprise when it was first reported here on March 21, a date when most T riders’ attention on Monday was focused on the opening of the Green Line Extension. At that time, the T had planned to shut down the Blue Line with less than two weeks’ notice to riders; the T later postponed the work until later in April.