The MBTA yesterday released two proposals to balance its budget. Each would include fare increases and service decreases. Neither is final; they’re just opening bids in a process that will include public hearings and undoubtedly input from the governor and the legislature. Inside today’s Globe story is this paragraph:
Both proposals would charge more for The RIDE, a federally mandated service that provides transportation for disabled residents. They would also each eliminate weekend service on the Mattapan high-speed line and Green Line E branch, routes served by a nearby bus line, while ending weekend and late-night commuter rail service and daily ferry service.
To repeat, both proposals would end weekend and late-night commuter rail service. People who own or be physically capable of driving a car might shrug about that, but for many who work, study, shop or seek medical care in Boston, the train from Gallagher Terminal to North Station is essential. And all of those activities aren’t five days per week undertakings. Add into that, all of those who attend evening athletic events or concerts will also be adversely effected. How many of those boisterous Bruins and Celtics fans who frequent the 10:40 pm or 12:10 am post game train will now take to their cars for a weaving drive back to Lowell on Rte 93?
Events on the MBTA rarely have a direct impact on people in Lowell, but we should all watch the outcome of this proposal.