Podcast 05 - Walking Bostonian joins the panel; election recap; Mayor Menino's legacy; Comm Ave redesign; Green Line stop consolidation, fare collection and accessibilty; and much more.

The panel is back for a post-election show crush-loaded with over an hour of the latest transportation news and analysis, this time joined by the Walking Bostonian (Matthew Danish) to explain how the theory of induced (travel) demand applies to roads and transit in Boston. We learn about everything from our most frustrating transit line (hint: it's green) to efforts to re imagine a boulevard of death (Commonwealth Ave in Allston & Brighton) to an entirely new neighborhood about to be created in Allston -- if we get it right.

November's show would not be complete without a recap of the election including the repeal of gas tax indexing, speculation on transit's future under Governor Charlie Baker and how we might build on the legacy of the late Mayor Menino.

We also discussed: making Commonwealth Ave (Allston/Brighton) safe for people; Mass Pike straightening and the future West Station; restoration of some weekend commuter rail service; the Fairmount Line; South Station expansion and the North-South rail link; thinking about Hubway as part of the public transportation network; a lazy bike safety report; the Lynn ferry experiment; and potential transit solutions for the Seaport District.

The Transit Matters Podcast is your source for transportation news, analysis, interviews and more. We focus on sustainable transportation planning, operations and policies in Boston and beyond. Transit Matters is a joint project of local transit enthusiasts Marc Ebuna, Jeremy Mendelson and Josh Fairchild.

Read more about the podcast and send us your questions, comments and ideas for topics or guests >> contact usOr share your thoughts on anything we discussed in the comments below.

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PODCAST 04 - MBTA Present & Future: transit challenges and opportunities.

Discussing the state of transit in Boston are Marc Ebuna, Jeremy Mendelson and Josh Fairchild. In this wide ranging conversation, sure to be the first of many, we discuss some of what's (not) working in our fragmented transportation network and share some potential solutions.

The present MBTA system is not much different from the trolley systems of a century ago, and over time many deficiencies have gone unaddressed. Join us for a chat and share your reactions below.

The Transit Matters Podcast is your biweekly source for transportation news, analysis, interviews and more. We focus on sustainable transportation planning, operations and policies in Boston and beyond, and we do it in the average commute time. Read more about the podcast and send us your questions, comments and ideas for topics or guests >> contact us

Like this podcast? Share it around, tell your friends and colleagues, and subscribe to the RSS feed (iTunes) to be notified of new posts and episodes.

Share your thoughts on anything we discussed in the comments below.

PODCAST 03 - Hub on Wheels & thoughts on biking in the city

Fellow bicyclist Sean Smith joins me to discuss the state of bicycling in and around Boston, and we review this year's Hub on Wheels ride with over 15,000 bikes and some car-free streets.  Also mentioned in the show is Newton bike infrastructure planning here.

Photo courtesy of The Boston Calendar.

Photo courtesy of The Boston Calendar.

I also enjoyed the Tour de Somerville a day earlier, starting at the new Assembly Row along the Mystic River.

The Transit Matters Podcast is your biweekly source for transportation news, analysis, interviews and more. We focus on sustainable transportation planning, operations and policies in Boston and beyond, and we do it in the average commute time. Read more about the podcast and send us your questions, comments and ideas for topics or guests >> contact us

Like this podcast? Share it around, tell your friends and colleagues, and subscribe to the RSS feed (iTunes) to be notified of new posts and episodes.

Share your thoughts on anything we discussed in the comments below.

Assembly Station Opens Amidst Accelerating Growth in Somerville

Assembly Station Opens Amidst Accelerating Growth in Somerville

The MBTA's first new station in 27 years opened this Tuesday at the start of service with little fanfare. Of course, no grand opening isn't without its ribbon cutting ceremonly, which followed that afternoon with Governor Patrick, Somerville Mayor Curtatone, MassDOT Secretary Davey, and MBTA GM Scott.

Assembly Station on the Orange Line is located in Somerville on the site of a former Ford assembly plant. Somerville is hoping to grow its available housing stock to keep up with booming housing demand and especially the demand induced by the introduction of this and 6 new stations over the next 5 years.

What does this growth mean for the region? Will Somerville be the only town on the north side of the Orange Line to truly seize the opportunity for 'smart growth' and add meaningful volume to a region starved for housing?

Green Line Update Teases Improvements Enabled by Tracking Technology

Green Line Update Teases Improvements Enabled by Tracking Technology

As a corollary to our guest contributor post on the disappointing improvements and issues with Commonwealth Avenue, we have a few (much delayed) updates about the T's more progressive plans to improve transit along the corridor.

Back in June, I had the pleasure of attending a forum on Green Line issues hosted by the MBTA and facilitated greatly by Senator Brownsberger. The presentation included updates on the primary issues afflicting the Green Line and its dependent riders as outlined by Brian Kane, MBTA Director of Policy, Performance Management & Process Re-Engineering and former budget analyst with the MBTA Advisory Board.

Others present at the meeting included leading MBTA staff that Dr. Scott heralded as subject matter experts to ensure questions could be answered directly by the most appropriate person from the agency. Top MBTA management included:

  • Dominick Tribone for questions on information systems
  • Bill McClellan, Director of Green Line Operations
  • Laura Brelsford, Deputy Director of System-Wide Accessibility
  • Melissa Dullea, Director of Planning & Schedules

Mr. Kane broke down the issues into 5 key areas and highlighted the improvements the T is aiming to tackle over the long run.

Comm Ave: from auto mile to people mile

Comm Ave: from auto mile to people mile

Nearly a century ago, Commonwealth Avenue from Kenmore Square, heading west to Packard's Corner, was home to over a hundred automobile dealers and associated vendors. For much of the twentieth century, while riding the trolley, you would have passed showroom after showroom, parking lot after parking lot, all calling out for you to buy a car and drive away.