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Building A Better T: Orange Line Service Suspended from Sullivan Square to Tufts Medical Center during 6 Weekends beginning October 4

Posted on October 1, 2019

No service between Sullivan Square and Tufts Medical Center for 6 consecutive weekends beginning at 8:45 PM on Fridays and lasting through the end of service on Sundays. 

Bus shuttles will be provided between Sullivan Square and Haymarket only; parallel Green Line service available for rest of diversion

Work being done as part of the 2019 Capital Acceleration Plan

Learn more at

Diagram of the Orange and Green lines. No train service between Sullivan Square and Tufts Medical Center. Shuttles run between Sullivan Square and Haymarket, where you can switch to the Green Line. Three Orange Line stations are not served at all (by either train or shuttle): State, Downtown Crossing, and Chinatown.

Today the MBTA reminded customers that weekend Orange Line service between Sullivan Square and Tufts Medical Center Stations will be suspended starting this weekend, beginning at 8:45 PM on Fridays through Sundays for 6 consecutive weekends as part of the MBTA’s 2019 Capital Acceleration Plan.

Accelerated work taking place on the Orange Line during these 6 weekends includes improvements at Downtown Crossing, Haymarket, and State Stations. The MBTA will replace and add new signage, clean, paint, and repair stairs/tile within the stations. The T will also replace 2,250 feet of track and clean and paint within Chinatown Station. The addition of these 6 weekend shutdowns allows the MBTA to complete work on the Orange Line level of these stations almost a year earlier than previously planned.

“As part of our efforts to build a better T, these weekend shutdowns will allow us to deliver improvements in safety, service, and the customer experience sooner than originally planned,” said MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak. “While we acknowledge major diversions in regular service can be inconvenient, these shutdowns are needed to execute an investment plan of this size and expedite completion of this work.” 

During these 6 weekends, bus shuttles will be provided between Sullivan Square and Haymarket Stations. There will be no shuttle bus service to Orange Line stations at State, Downtown Crossing, and Chinatown with customers asked to travel via parallel downtown Green Line service. 

The 6 weekends in which Orange Line service is suspended between Sullivan Square and Tufts Medical Center are:

  • 8:45 PM on October 4 – October 6
  • 8:45 PM on October 11 – October 13
  • 8:45 PM on October 18 – October 20
  • 8:45 PM on October 25 – October 27
  • 8:45 PM on November 1 – November 3
  • 8:45 PM on November 8 – November 10

Customers heading northbound are instead asked to take the Orange Line to Back Bay, transfer to the Green Line at nearby Copley Station (0.2 miles), take the Green Line to Haymarket, board shuttle buses to Sullivan Square, and transfer to the Orange Line.

Customers heading southbound are instead asked to take the Orange Line to Sullivan Square, board the shuttle to Haymarket, transfer to the Green Line, take the Green Line to Copley, and transfer to the Orange Line at nearby Back Bay (0.2 miles). Customers are also encouraged to utilize parallel Green Line service in the downtown area at North Station, Haymarket, Government Center, Park Street, Boylston, Arlington, and Copley Stations.

Customers with disabilities should see MBTA personnel in order to take an accessible van from Copley, Back Bay, Tufts Medical Center, and Haymarket to any Orange Line station without train service as well as Copley, Back Bay, Tufts Medical Center, and Sullivan Square. 

More Details on the Work

MBTA crews and contractors will also remove and completely replace the pit track in closed Orange Line stations during these 6 weekend closures, which would not be accessible to work crews without a complete shutdown. The Orange Line pit track in these areas is 30 to 40 years old and, while safe to travel over at reduced speeds, is also ready to be replaced. 

The broad limits between Tufts Medical Center and Sullivan Square are necessary as these areas are "portal" access points for work crews to load in construction equipment and materials into the underground portions of the Orange Line. The broad closure limits also give the MBTA a valuable work window to perform repairs to platform edges, escalators, elevators, stairways, and fare equipment; perform track and power maintenance in the tunnels between stations, including the complete replacement of third rail insulators and third rail electrical connections; and perform tunnel debris clean-up work, reducing the risk of smoke and fire hazards.

Learn more about Orange Line Service Changes

More Information

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