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Old 08-11-2019, 06:42 PM   #3661
bigeman312
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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Originally Posted by tysmith95 View Post
Why in the world would you extend the red south? It already goes way further than the other rapid transit lines.

I'd extend the red out to Waltham using the Fitchburg or Lexington before I'd extend it south.
Yes. Extending beyond Ashmont (to Mattapan via Milton) or Alewife (to Waltham via Belmont or to Lexington via Arlington) would make far more sense than extending beyond Braintree.
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Old 08-11-2019, 07:45 PM   #3662
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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This. Unfuck the Old Colony by putting Braintree under Ashmont after JFK/UMass to allow two tracks for the OC. Then run Urban Rail to Brockton at sub-1/2 hr frequencies. No reason to bring Red past Braintree, and it would really hard to do, because the OC ROW south of Braintree was never wider than two-tracks.
And thereís the answer on ROW, thanks. I wouldnít say I think extending Red past Braintree was a good idea (itís not), more curious if it was even feasible from a ROW perspective, because BostonBoy got me wondering with his Savin Hill superstation idea.

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Yes. Extending beyond Ashmont (to Mattapan via Milton) or Alewife (to Waltham via Belmont or to Lexington via Arlington) would make far more sense than extending beyond Braintree.
For the record, that need not be an either/or, and eliminating the MSHL is one of the more obvious choices to make in the system, Milton NIMBYs notwithstanding. The Red leads at Alewife are angled towards Arlington, which is unfortunate because Lexington is emphatically not on board with the program. Not sure how hard it would be to get Red over to the Fitchburg but Iím fairly sure it would be a bear.
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Old 08-11-2019, 07:55 PM   #3663
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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Originally Posted by roy_mustang76 View Post
For the record, that need not be an either/or, and eliminating the MSHL is one of the more obvious choices to make in the system, Milton NIMBYs notwithstanding. The Red leads at Alewife are angled towards Arlington, which is unfortunate because Lexington is emphatically not on board with the program. Not sure how hard it would be to get Red over to the Fitchburg but Iím fairly sure it would be a bear.
To the north, you're only getting Red going in the Arlington direction. You'd have to blow up Alewife to get to the Fitchburg ROW (*and* get past Belmont NIMBYs to get to anywhere worthwhile).

Waltham is best served in the medium term by urban rail 15-20 min headways from a Weston/128 park & ride to Boston. Maybe someday consider running a Green Line branch to Waltham out of Union and Porter via Fitchburg, but you'd have to bump the Commuter Rail to the old Central RR ROW in Waltham Center through to the Weston/128 station where it can rejoin the Fitchburg ROW.
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Old 08-13-2019, 03:01 PM   #3664
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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Originally Posted by George_Apley View Post
To the north, you're only getting Red going in the Arlington direction. You'd have to blow up Alewife to get to the Fitchburg ROW (*and* get past Belmont NIMBYs to get to anywhere worthwhile).
I want to play. Crazy-pitch incoming. Alewife is a crap location in the middle of a floodplain, and just causes more congestion.

If you're going to spend $Billion$ on the Red line, you don't stop there at all, since it would require a lot of tight turns to get back to high-density locations. You head out of Davis straight to Mass Ave and Arlington, with 3 stops on Mass Ave , and end with a giant garage here along Rte 2 without many neighbors and already a state-owned location: https://goo.gl/maps/WmACgyS1FU5Y5ktG8

The Alewife stop gets transitioned into a Commuter/Regional Rail destination. That garage is a structural disaster already and will have to get torn down soon anyway, so that's not the hurdle. Rte 2 traffic gets smoothed out, rail service isn't duplicated, and high-density areas are better covered.
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Old 08-13-2019, 05:24 PM   #3665
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

Re discarding Alewife: now that is a Crazy Transit Pitch. +1 for imagination, if not feasibility.

Re Green Line to Waltham: my aesthetic preference is to travel via Watertown rather than Belmont, but the ROW gets pretty fuzzy between Waltham and Watertown. But, regardless of which route gets taken, I think LRT is tough for that corridor because itís a loooooong trip downtown. Waltham looks as far as Riverside, but not so much when you realize you have to go up to Porter and then around and back in to Downtown ó itís a much more circuitous route (or is a 2 sear ride with Red). Plus, Riverside has Longwood as a major job destination halfway to downtown ó Waltham via Porter doesnít have that.

Iíd say itís a case for both Urban Rail and Green Line. Urban Rail via Belmont for express service downtown from Waltham, and Green Line via Watertown ó serving downtown commuters from Watertown, and serving reverse commuters going out to Waltham (plus a last mile feeder around Waltham proper).

Last edited by Riverside; 08-13-2019 at 07:02 PM.
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Old 08-13-2019, 05:37 PM   #3666
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
If you're going to spend $Billion$ on the Red line, you don't stop there at all, since it would require a lot of tight turns to get back to high-density locations. You head out of Davis straight to Mass Ave and Arlington, with 3 stops on Mass Ave , and end with a giant garage here along Rte 2 without many neighbors and already a state-owned location: https://goo.gl/maps/WmACgyS1FU5Y5ktG8
I like it. Route 2's whole Exit 57 "complex" (not just the DOT facility but also all the space inside the clover leafs) should be transformed into a Red Line terminus and then the excess land sold off for 40B housing (1 to 1.3 parking spots per unit)

The Rt 2 cloverleafs are probably overbuilt (sized for a Route 2 that never happened)
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Old 08-13-2019, 07:06 PM   #3667
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

Question:

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Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
The Alewife stop gets transitioned into a Commuter/Regional Rail destination. That garage is a structural disaster already and will have to get torn down soon anyway, so that's not the hurdle. Rte 2 traffic gets smoothed out, rail service isn't duplicated, and high-density areas are better covered.
What do you envision by a "Regional Rail" destination here? Without the Red Line connection, there isn't a whole lot "there" there.
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Old 08-13-2019, 07:39 PM   #3668
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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Question:
What do you envision by a "Regional Rail" destination here? Without the Red Line connection, there isn't a whole lot "there" there.
Cambridge has piled a lot of both residential and office into the Alewife area--probably equal to (or more than) Central Square in terms of units and Sq Ft.

The objection to re-routing the 79 and 350 away from Alewife to Davis was that Alewife needed the service. I disagreed it needed the 79 and 350, but it is certainly worthy of being "on the network"
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Old 08-13-2019, 07:41 PM   #3669
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

Oh, interesting, my mistake then. So, a new mainline rail station under Alewife Brook Boulevard?

EDIT: Also, I'm going to totally eat my words here. Waltham to Government Center via Porter, whether by Belmont or Watertown, is almost exactly the same distance (trackage-wise) as Riverside to Government Center. All three routes come in a little under 12 miles. So I was totally wrong about that.
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Old 08-13-2019, 09:03 PM   #3670
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
I want to play. Crazy-pitch incoming. Alewife is a crap location in the middle of a floodplain, and just causes more congestion.

If you're going to spend $Billion$ on the Red line, you don't stop there at all, since it would require a lot of tight turns to get back to high-density locations. You head out of Davis straight to Mass Ave and Arlington, with 3 stops on Mass Ave , and end with a giant garage here along Rte 2 without many neighbors and already a state-owned location: https://goo.gl/maps/WmACgyS1FU5Y5ktG8

The Alewife stop gets transitioned into a Commuter/Regional Rail destination. That garage is a structural disaster already and will have to get torn down soon anyway, so that's not the hurdle. Rte 2 traffic gets smoothed out, rail service isn't duplicated, and high-density areas are better covered.
As long as we are in the crazy thread... I donít hate this. Build your CR stop, but also do a GLX2 from Union via Porter with a terminus at New Alewife. That ROW is far from all the RL infrastructure, so you create loads more developable land when you nuke the RL station and garage. One pedestrian bridge incorporated into the station and Alewife is suddenly an actual neighborhood in Cambridge instead of the existing hybrid-office-park-ish nonsense.
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Old 08-14-2019, 06:26 AM   #3671
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
I want to play. Crazy-pitch incoming. Alewife is a crap location in the middle of a floodplain, and just causes more congestion.

If you're going to spend $Billion$ on the Red line, you don't stop there at all, since it would require a lot of tight turns to get back to high-density locations. You head out of Davis straight to Mass Ave and Arlington, with 3 stops on Mass Ave , and end with a giant garage here along Rte 2 without many neighbors and already a state-owned location: https://goo.gl/maps/WmACgyS1FU5Y5ktG8

The Alewife stop gets transitioned into a Commuter/Regional Rail destination. That garage is a structural disaster already and will have to get torn down soon anyway, so that's not the hurdle. Rte 2 traffic gets smoothed out, rail service isn't duplicated, and high-density areas are better covered.
I know I've included that MassDOT location on my own maps before, but since you don't mention it, how are you getting from your Mass Ave tunnel to there? Deep bore under Arlington Heights? That's a lot of hard tunneling just to stub out at the highway and not make it to 128.

You also gloss a little bit over getting from Davis to Mass Ave. I assume you just follow the existing tunnel to Mass Ave and then turn north under it, but that is a tight turn, which you said was a problem for Alewife.

Still, I agree with fattony, the concept of getting rid of Alewife is fun if its function can be replicated further up Route 2.
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Old 08-14-2019, 06:26 AM   #3672
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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What about extending the RL to Weymouth? Could help jumpstart the Naval Air Station redevelopment.
The Plymouth Line stop is pathetically far from the actual base, which so far is looking awfully car centric in its development. Tantalizing renders, middling execution. But it's a moot point; no room on the Plymouth ROW to extend Red without cannibalizing CR to a bunch of high-ridership stops further south that really need the service and would thrive bigly if they got RER frequencies.

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Originally Posted by tysmith95 View Post
Why in the world would you extend the red south? It already goes way further than the other rapid transit lines.

I'd extend the red out to Waltham using the Fitchburg or Lexington before I'd extend it south.
Didn't we just address this last week??? Red CAN'T go to Waltham. It hits Alewife 2000 ft. from the Fitchburg Line, curves into Arlington, and is blocked by wall-to-wall buildings from ever changing directions towards Waltham. And there are tough-to-eliminate grade crossings en route.

Cahn't get theya from heya. Green out of Union/Porter can come out there if you really want Waltham service, since it actually trawls the Fitchburg Line. Red isn't physically available for that task.
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Old 08-14-2019, 07:59 AM   #3673
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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Didn't we just address this last week??? Red CAN'T go to Waltham. It hits Alewife 2000 ft. from the Fitchburg Line, curves into Arlington, and is blocked by wall-to-wall buildings from ever changing directions towards Waltham. And there are tough-to-eliminate grade crossings en route.

Cahn't get theya from heya. Green out of Union/Porter can come out there if you really want Waltham service, since it actually trawls the Fitchburg Line. Red isn't physically available for that task.
We've had people in this thread talking about rebuilding out of Davis. I think simply rebuilding tracks on a new alignment is reasonable compared to that. At the very most you're just lopping off tail tracks and continuing along under whatever bike path that is out to the Fitchburg ROW. This is Crazy Transit Pitches. We can propose things that involve new construction I think.
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Old 08-14-2019, 08:34 AM   #3674
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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We've had people in this thread talking about rebuilding out of Davis. I think simply rebuilding tracks on a new alignment is reasonable compared to that. At the very most you're just lopping off tail tracks and continuing along under whatever bike path that is out to the Fitchburg ROW. This is Crazy Transit Pitches. We can propose things that involve new construction I think.
While I agree with you about the use of CTP, I don't think Red should go to Waltham. It would require reactivating the Central MA RR in Waltham to reroute the Commuter Rail, it would never get through Belmont. It would need to nuke grade-crossings in Waltham Center somehow... it would be a mess.
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Old 08-14-2019, 09:15 AM   #3675
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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We've had people in this thread talking about rebuilding out of Davis. I think simply rebuilding tracks on a new alignment is reasonable compared to that. At the very most you're just lopping off tail tracks and continuing along under whatever bike path that is out to the Fitchburg ROW. This is Crazy Transit Pitches. We can propose things that involve new construction I think.
The only trajectory out of Davis is the current trajectory; it's aligned on the Fitchburg Cutoff. On approach to Alewife you CAN'T make up the 2000 ft. gap with the Fitchburg Main without blowing up lots of apartment buildings. Look on Google; it's wall-to-wall residential. And you can't continue west from existing Alewife without blowing up office buildings. This isn't about realigning tail tracks, it's about loss of business square footage and housing units as a mandatory project prereq.

Those are untenable tradeoffs. Especially when, as noted, GLX-Union is already on the ROW to Waltham. No one's personal preference for Red-over-Green is going to survive judgment over the mass displacement of residents and business. No way, no how. Let this one go. You can get rapid transit to Waltham by other means that don't require hyper-authoritarian property displacement.
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Old 08-14-2019, 09:23 AM   #3676
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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Originally Posted by George_Apley View Post
While I agree with you about the use of CTP, I don't think Red should go to Waltham. It would require reactivating the Central MA RR in Waltham to reroute the Commuter Rail, it would never get through Belmont. It would need to nuke grade-crossings in Waltham Center somehow... it would be a mess.
I agree that sending HRT out to Waltham would be a colossal undertaking that would be unlikely to succeed. I don't think I've weighed in on the actual process yet, but I think it's one of those "three-digit years away but probably" projects. Waltham and Watertown definitely need more robust transit, and I feel like that ROW (or the Central MA) provides the best way to get heavy rail out in that general direction. Leave the route along the Charles to the Green Line for inter-city travel and Watertown Square travel, but give Waltham a pseudo-express line downtown via the Red Line and Urban Rail.
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Old 08-14-2019, 09:28 AM   #3677
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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The only trajectory out of Davis is the current trajectory; it's aligned on the Fitchburg Cutoff. On approach to Alewife you CAN'T make up the 2000 ft. gap with the Fitchburg Main without blowing up lots of apartment buildings. Look on Google; it's wall-to-wall residential. And you can't continue west from existing Alewife without blowing up office buildings. This isn't about realigning tail tracks, it's about loss of business square footage and housing units as a mandatory project prereq.
I have literally no idea what you're talking about.


EDIT: And it seems like there's confusion about who is proposing what here. Someone way up there proposed a new alignment out of Davis along Mass Ave and 2. I'm not saying anything about that (other than bringing it up as a point of comparison), so I'm not sure why you're talking to me about blowing up apartment buildings trying to get to the Fitchburg Line from Davis. I'm only talking about cutting the tail tracks at Alewife and continuing along under the bike path to the Fitchburg Line.
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Old 08-14-2019, 09:52 AM   #3678
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

No need to stress:
F-Line was talking about the Fitchburg Main (currently in use)
You've mapped the Fitchburg Cutoff (currently a bike path of the same name)

So far I don't see any big conflicts:

If the Red needs to go to Waltham, it'd go by Fitchburg Cutoff

If the Red's been diverted up Mass Ave, the CR/RER replacment for "Alewife" would go along the Fitchburg Main
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Old 08-14-2019, 10:44 AM   #3679
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

Jeez we need EIS reviews for crazy transit pitches now?

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I know I've included that MassDOT location on my own maps before, but since you don't mention it, how are you getting from your Mass Ave tunnel to there? Deep bore under Arlington Heights? That's a lot of hard tunneling just to stub out at the highway and not make it to 128.
My thought is like others, Lexington (unlike Arlington) would never allow for higher density development, so adding heavy rail doesn't really make sense out to 128 anyway. The easiest spot for a stub end, is to reach Rt 2 turning West from Mass Ave under the Sutherland Woods (Bermans Liquor store is approx location). It's a hill, so you're going to do more than cut/cover no matter the application for 3/4 mile.


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Still, I agree with fattony, the concept of getting rid of Alewife is fun if its function can be replicated further up Route 2.
As others noted - Fresh Pond is a pretty easy GLX2 extension up the ROW and is more suited to light rail, but will never happen while it's already served by the Red. With the plans Cambridge has to continue developing the area, a CR stop makes sense as well serving as an "express" to downtown. Rt 2 should be the goal for the Red endpoint, and allow Fresh Pond not to be such a traffic mess by pulling cars heading to transit off the road a few miles out.
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Old 08-14-2019, 11:48 AM   #3680
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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I have literally no idea what you're talking about.


EDIT: And it seems like there's confusion about who is proposing what here. Someone way up there proposed a new alignment out of Davis along Mass Ave and 2. I'm not saying anything about that (other than bringing it up as a point of comparison), so I'm not sure why you're talking to me about blowing up apartment buildings trying to get to the Fitchburg Line from Davis. I'm only talking about cutting the tail tracks at Alewife and continuing along under the bike path to the Fitchburg Line.
That map is not accurate. The tunnel enters through the center of the parking garage then does a due-north turn onto the access road. You cannot get on-alignment with the Cutiff ROW without nuking >1 office buildings and cannot S-curve from the Lexington to Cutoff alignments without fouling the swamp. No other path is possible. You blow up commercial buildings trying to change alignments after Alewife; you blow up residential buildings trying to change the alignment right before Alewife with some new station located adjacent-south but still attached to the garage avoiding the commercial structures. Pick your poison; neither is acceptable collateral damage.

^That's^ what I was referring to. It was wholly germane to your proposal.
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