With a new temporary general manager in charge and the search for a full-time replacement underway, the leaders of the MBTA may be turning a page on the goals of the transit agency from aggressively seeking cost savings to targeted expansions of service.

The T has been considering expanding commuter rail service to Foxborough for almost two years, but the proposal is just now gaining steam. The town of Foxborough is backing the plan to extend eight weekday Fairmount Line trips and one Franklin line trip to the Foxborough station, which is currently only used on Patriots game days.

The decision to expand into Foxborough is up to the T's Fiscal Management Control Board, all handpicked by Governor Charlie Baker. On Monday, Baker's own economic development secretary Jay Ash pitched to the board the Foxborough extension as a boost to business along the Route 1 corridor.

Mela Miles from the Fairmount Indigo Transit Coalition told the T's board she fears emphasizing Foxborough will harm the existing service to Dorchester and Roxbury.

"I have not heard one word that ever mentioned anyone along the Fairmount corridor and the impacts that this would have on our communities," Miles told the board.

The $1.5 million dollar annual price tag for the service would be partially subsidized by the Kraft Group, which owns the Patriots and stands to greatly benefit from easier access to its Patriot's Place complex for workers and consumers.

The T expects only 150 new daily riders to use the station, but the Baker administration is aggressively pushing for the expansion.

Another service expansion on the table is adding dedicated late night and early morning bus service. On Monday, the T board heard two plans that call for buses to operate limited service between the hours of 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. on the system's busiest bus routes.

The limited plan, dubbed NightBus Peak, would run buses on key routes every 30 minutes between 1 a.m. and 3 a.m., then start again at 4 a.m. A more robust version of the plan also under consideration would run the same crucial routes from 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. without interruption. Transit Matters estimates the limited plan would cost the MBTA $2.5 million a year, while the more comprehensive option would cost $3.25 million annually.

The plan is the brainchild of the advocacy group TransitMatters and has the backing of the cities of Boston, Cambridge and Somerville. 

Part of the reason state officials support expanding the MBTA's service hours is to provide transport for the area's late night and early morning workers. The plans heard Monday emphasize the needs of first shift workers who may need to be at Logan Airport, one of Boston's around-the-clock hospitals or other workplaces outside of normal commute hours.

As part of its research before designing the bus plan and pitch to the board, Transit Matters surveyed the public and reached out to late night employers. They found that over 60,000 Boston-area workers begin or end work between 12 a.m. and 5 a.m., the times when transportation options in the city are limited and expensive. 

The group used an MBTA survey on late night ridership to determine that overnight service is mostly in demand from 1 a.m. to 3 a.m. for late-night workers. Demand then dips after 3, but pick up again at 4:30 a.m., when overnight shifts end or early morning commuters begin to trickle into work.

"Of course, there are others who would likely use NightBus services, particularly those who are patrons of the many and growing number of establishments open for business until 1 a.m. and 2 a.m.," the TransitMatters proposal reads. "But our focus, and the focus of this pilot, is on serving workers."

New acting General Manager Steve Poftak takes over management of the MBTA on an acting basis this month, after former General Manager Brian Shortsleeve left the post to rejoin the private sector. Shortsleeve swapped positions with Poftak, filling the new GM's seat on the board when Poftak took the T's reigns.

The next major decision before the board is whether to privatize one or more of it's nine bus maintenance garages. The agency has been entertaining the idea since Baker put the FMCB in place in 2015 and began receiving responses to an official request for proposals to outsource the bus work this month.

The T's board could vote on either the late night bus plans or Foxborough rail expansion issues at its August 14th meeting.