New Charles/MGH Station Opens
Federal Transit Administrator James Simpson joined Mayor Thomas M. Menino, Transportation Secretary Bernard Cohen, and MBTA General Manager Daniel A. Grabauskas today to celebrate the modernization of Charles/MGH Station. In making the station compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, the MBTA, in conjunction with the Federal Transit Administration, has designed and built a modern, customer-friendly transit station that boasts safe, barrier free access for persons with disabilities, accessible paths of travel, improved signage, and the addition of elevators/escalators. Red Line riders can now approach the new entrance at street level and, once inside the station, utilize elevators and escalators to reach the platform above.
"The FTA is proud to have supported these renovations with over $36 million in federal funding, because they embody the kind of design features that we want to see in transit," said Federal Transit Administrator James S. Simpson. "This is a great example of successful Public-Private Partnership-where the Massachusetts General Hospital invested more than $2.5 million in private sector dollars."
“I want to thank everyone at the MBTA for working so hard to create a beautiful, modern station that is safe and accessible for commuters and pedestrians,” said Mayor Thomas M. Menino.
Constructed in the early 1930’s, the station remained in active use with minimal change to station access and traffic flow for more than 70 years. The modernization of Charles/MGH station began in June 2003. Federal, local and private funds provided for a total investment of $48.6 million including the $34.4 million overhaul of the station. Additional amenities include: two elevators, two escalators, wider staircases, electronic message boards, new public address speakers, yellow, tactile warning strips along the edges of the platforms, new emergency call boxes, and eight surveillance cameras on the platforms and in the lobby area.
Reaffirming the administration’s commitment of placing accessible and affordable public transportation at the top of their agenda, Transportation Secretary Bernard Cohen said, “The modernization of Charles/MGH is a prime example of the types of projects Governor Patrick and Lt. Governor Murray encourage and support.”
The MBTA had more than 30 public meetings with city and state officials, local residents and business leaders to discuss plans for the rehabilitation of the Charles/MGH station. The completed station reflects the many comments received pertaining to improvements to accessibility, and vehicular flow.
MBTA General Manager Daniel A. Grabauskas touted the importance of community involvement and partnerships when undertaking such a large project. “Today we have a modern, accessible, state of the art station that will efficiently serve the Beacon Hill and West End communities, Mass General Hospital, Mass Eye and Ear, and other medical institutions in the area,” said General Manager Grabauskas. “This could not have been accomplished without this partnership. The transformation of Charles Circle into a premiere gateway to Cambridge and Boston has begun.”
"We were very pleased to have been able to contribute to the redesign and renovation of the Charles/MGH Station, which serves thousands of MGH employees, patients and neighborhood residents on a daily basis,” said Dr. James J. Mongan, President and CEO of Partners HealthCare. "The new station will make life easier for those with disabilities and encourage greater use of public transportation by the general public.”
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