MBTA to Expedite Critical Track Work Between JFK/UMass and Ashmont Stations and on the Mattapan Line, Shuttle Buses to Replace Service on Ashmont Branch and Mattapan Line October 14-29
Posted on August 24, 2023
Ashmont Branch trains and Mattapan Line trolleys will be replaced with free, accessible shuttle bus service for 16 days.
Today, the MBTA announced full-access closures of the Red Line Ashmont Branch between JFK/UMass and Ashmont Stations and the Mattapan Line between Ashmont and Mattapan Stations for 16 days from Saturday, October 14, through Sunday, October 29. During this closure, the MBTA will provide free, accessible shuttle bus service for riders on the Ashmont Branch and the Mattapan Line. This diversion will allow the MBTA to perform critical track work.
The MBTA will hold four open houses in September to provide the public an opportunity to engage with the project team, learn about the details of the construction work, and voice their thoughts, comments, and concerns. The dates, times, and locations of these open houses will be published on the MBTA Public Meetings webpage soon. Riders will also be able to find more information on this service change through in-station signage, in-station public announcements, and at mbta.com/alerts.
“Safety of the MBTA system is paramount, and this 16-day closure allows us to address many of the Red Line’s worst speed restrictions much faster than we’ve been able to accomplish during night and weekend work,” said MBTA General Manager and CEO Phillip Eng. “We understand service changes can be frustrating, and I want to thank the public for their patience while we perform this critical and targeted work between JFK/UMass and Ashmont Stations and on the Mattapan Line.”
The track between JFK/UMass and Ashmont Stations and on the Mattapan Line is some of the oldest in the system and is in need of replacement. This diversion will allow crews to replace rail, ties, and ballast to improve reliability and reduce maintenance needs. The MBTA is able to expedite this important work by working around the clock for 16 days with unencumbered access, which would have otherwise taken six months to complete if crews only worked during nights and weekends. Following this work, 28 speed restrictions will be alleviated in this area, improving travel times for Ashmont Branch and Mattapan Line riders. The MBTA also plans to maximize these full-access closures by identifying additional work opportunities along both lines to improve the rider experience through station enhancements, such as painting, power washing, and repairing lighting fixtures; vegetation removal; the removal of tripping hazards; and accessibility improvements.
Shuttle buses will make stops at all stations during this service change. Riders are also encouraged to utilize local bus routes and the Fairmount Line on the Commuter Rail during this service change. The Ashmont Branch serves approximately 40,000 riders per day, and the Mattapan Line serves approximately 3,700 riders daily.
Here are some additional details about the service change:
- Shuttle buses will operate every 5-6 minutes during weekday peak hours and every 10-15 minutes during weekday and weekend off-peak hours.
- Shuttle buses will be wheelchair accessible.
- Transit Ambassadors and other MBTA personnel will be available at each shuttle stop to assist riders.
- Riders are encouraged to allow extra travel time during this service change.