WGBH News Focus: The MBTA

Governor: State Needs a Long-Term Transit Solution

By Toni Waterman & Sarah Birnbaum   |   Wednesday, March 28, 2012
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March 29, 2012

norwood mbta

The MBTA's proposal eliminates weekend service on three lines — not, however, the line that runs through Norwood, shown here. (Wikimedia)

> > VIDEO: Transportation secretary Richard Davey appears on Greater Boston after the announcement.
BOSTON — Gov. Deval Patrick said he supports the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority's final proposal to bridge a $185 million budget gap but warned that much work is to come.

“The T we inherited had a fatally flawed budget. It is burdened with Big Dig debt and pushing payments off into the future," Patrick said. "I don’t favor short-term patches. I prefer long-term solutions and long-term problem-solving. That’s going to be at the top of our agenda next year when the Legislature gets back.”

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MBTA Plans to Raise Fares, Cut Service

By Danielle Dreilinger   |   Tuesday, March 13, 2012
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Mar. 13, 2012

norwood commuter rail station

You might not be able to get there from here on weekends anymore: The MBTA says service cuts are to come. (Wikimedia)

BOSTON — In an open letter to MBTA users, state transportation secretary Richard Davey said Tuesday the plan to close a $159 million budget gap would include both fare hikes and service cuts. The letter was co-authored with acting MBTA general manager Jonathan Davis.

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Lawmakers: We Have to Fix the T ... Somehow

By Sarah Birnbaum   |   Monday, March 12, 2012
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Mar. 13, 2012

BOSTON — As the debate continues over proposed fare hikes and service cuts for Boston-area mass transit, advocates called Monday for a long-term solution to Massachusetts' transportation funding problems.
Over the past two months, commuters have packed public hearings to rail against potential fare hikes and service cuts. Faced with a budget gap of $160 million next year, the MBTA has proposed raising fares by as much as 40 percent and cutting weekend and nighttime service on the commuter rail.

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Yet More Fears over MBTA Fares

By WGBH News   |   Wednesday, March 7, 2012
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Mar. 7, 2012

mbta map

The policy group A Better City thinks this map should stay as is — but with a 25 percent fare hike.

BOSTON — Businesses will be drastically impacted if the MBTA institutes massive cuts in service and raises fares higher than what many can afford. That was the conclusion of a panel of experts convened by the organization A Better City in downtown Boston on Mar. 5.

The panel focused on the economic fallout of the proposed cuts and heard from company leaders, politicians and activists.

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Emotions Run High at Malden MBTA Hearing

By Ibby Caputo   |   Friday, February 17, 2012
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Feb. 17, 2012

malden mbta

Some of the people who wait at the Malden subway platform every weekday voiced their opinions at a Feb. 16 public hearing. (Pi.1415926535/Wikimedia)

MALDEN, Mass. — Media attention focused this week on the MBTA hearings at the Boston Public Library, where hundreds staged a protest — but transit users in the outskirts of the Orange Line are just as mad.

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The Real Impact of MBTA Cuts: A Mattapan Story

By Toni Waterman   |   Tuesday, January 17, 2012
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Jan. 17, 2012

BOSTON -- Even the most seasoned T rider has probably never heard of the Mattapan High Speed line: the old orange-and-tan above-ground trolley that connects Mattapan to Ashmont Station in Dorchester, which in turn connects to the rest of Boston.
Since it’s one of the lesser-used lines in the city, the MBTA is considering cutting its weekend service — a savings of $1.5 million a year. But for riders like Tasheaka Buchanan, the cut means one thing: being stranded.

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About WGBH News Focus: The MBTA

Love it, like it or lump it, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority touches nearly everyone's lives in eastern Mass. And it's in financial crisis, with newly announced fare hikes not enough to cover next year's projected $100 million budget deficit. WGBH News features special focus coverage of the tracks and troubles of our public transit system.

About the Authors
Danielle Dreilinger Danielle Dreilinger
Danielle Dreilinger is an author and news producer for WGBH.org.

Sarah Birnbaum
Sarah Birnbaum is WGBH News' State House reporter. Send her a news tip.
The WGBH News team comprises the WGBH radio newsroom, The Callie Crossley Show, The Emily Rooney Show and WGBH Channel 2 reporters and producers from Greater Boston and Basic Black. 

"If I Ran the T ..."

Everyone who's ever rode on the T has an opinion about what problem they'd change first. If you were in charge, where would you start? Let us know.

The Fare and Service Plan

On July 1, the T will introduce fare increases and service cuts to cover a $159 million budget gap for the next fiscal year. Read the plan on mbta.com.


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