Green Line Construction Moves Forward

Photo by Alexander Svirsky,

– Allison Goldsberry

Phase 1 of the Green Line Extension to Medford and Somerville has received its official notice to proceed, according to project officials.

Barletta Heavy Division, Inc is the contractor for Phase 1 of the MBTA Green Line Extension Project. A public “meet and greet” with the contractor will be held prior to construction to review the schedule and other details, according to an email from MassDOT.

The first phase of construction includes the reconstruction of two bridges, the Harvard Street railroad bridge in Medford and the Medford Street railroad bridge in Somerville. Both bridges will be rebuilt to accommodate the existing Commuter Rail tracks and the new Green Line tracks.

Reconstruction of the Harvard Street bridge began in December. Work on the Medford Street bridge will happen in the spring.

A building owned by the MBTA will also be torn down to clear a way for the eventual extension of Green Line tracks from Lechmere Station. The building is located at 21 Water Street in East Cambridge, according to the MassDOT, and will be torn down “later in 2013.”

The first phase of construction will cost $12.9 million.

Currently, two stations are planned for Medford, one in Ball Square on the Medford/Somerville line and another in the Medford Hillside neighborhood on College Avenue. The once $600 million project is now estimated to cost $954 million. And that’s just for six planned stops. The seventh, a stop at Route 16, could cost another $130 million, pushing the total cost of the project to $1.12 billion.

This entry was posted on Monday, February 11th, 2013 at 7:28 am and is filed under Green Line Extension. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

6 Responses to “Green Line Construction Moves Forward”

  1. Michael says:

    The College Avenue stop is not “in the Medford Hillside neighborhood.” The Green Line Extension is required to go all the way to Medford Hillside, so this has been an area of disagreement between Medford Hillside residents who want the Green Line and the MBTA which would like to stop short at College Avenue.

    The MBTA has tried to redefine Medford Hillside to include College Avenue and parts of Somerville, but even they have never claimed that the College Avenue station is “in the Medford Hillside neighborhood” — they have only claimed that it’s on the border. It’s actually surrounded by the Tufts campus. They have also admitted that the station will not serve most of Medford Hillside unless people are willing to walk MUCH farther to this T stop than to any other T stop in the entire system.

  2. Joe says:

    This entire extension is money wasted that would be better spent in other areas. Somerville and Medford already have plenty of public transportation options nearby and bus access to major T stops in the area. Fix the existing MBTA system before expanding.

  3. Michael says:

    This much-needed extension has already been put off for decades by people saying “Do something else first.” Fix the system AND expand it. Make it more useful, and more people will use it.

  4. Joe says:

    Fix it and expand sounds great if the State had unlimited resources. Unfortunately that is not the case. I am speaking as a Medford resident (not too far from the proposed College Avenue station) and T rider.

  5. Joe says:

    Taken a step further, here are some crude calculations on the 130 million cost to extend to the Hillside (I am against the entire expansion, not singling out Hillside).

    The Hillside stop would need about 130,000 daily riders at current rates for an entire year to recoup that cost (without even factoring interest). A more realistic projection of say 2000-3000 daily riders, will take over 40 years (again, no interest factored in). All for an area that already has bus access to College Avenue along Boston Avenue.

  6. Billinc says:

    Simple cost effective solution is to have the Commuter rail add a stop either at Tufts or Ball Sq which will allow greenline access through-out the whole corridor from Lowell.

    If you are in the planning stages, building a platform to accommadate this would be much cheaper than running tracks to Route 16 or elsewhere since there is an existing train that currently runs to and from Lowell which will allow people to make choices. It is 19 minutes to Boston by commuter rail from West Medford. So it adds an additional 4-6 minutes to the run. I’m sure with scheduling there can be options for which train stops and which one is express as well.

    God Save the Commonwealth of Massachusetts……

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