Skip to main content

Orange Line Transformation Program

New orange line car being tested at Wellington

2015 – 2021

As part of our $8 billion, 5-year capital investment program that began July 1, 2018, we're rebuilding the Orange Line.

This work, including new signal infrastructure, upgrades to our test track, an expanded and upgraded maintenance facility, and an upgraded yard, will result in faster, more comfortable trips on the Orange Line, as well as less crowding on platforms and in stations.

It will also support the all-new, expanded Orange Line fleet of 152 modern, spacious vehicles, ensuring that an additional 30,000 riders per day can take the Orange Line.

Why We're Doing This Work

The MBTA procured new Red and Orange Line vehicles in 2015. To accommodate these new vehicles, we also began a $1.2 billion Red/Orange Line Transformation Program to upgrade yards, maintenance facilities, test tracks, signals, and power systems.

To add capacity and improve reliability, we set goals for 4.5-minute headways during rush hour and on-time performance 95% of the time or more. This requires additional improvements to stations, track, signals, and power systems.

Contracts have been awarded for the following projects as part of this initiative:

  • Orange Line signal upgrades: Design started in 2019
  • New Orange Line vehicles: First set of new cars in service August 14, 2019
  • Wellington Yard rebuild: Work began spring 2018
  • Wellington Maintenance Facility updates: Work began in summer 2017
  • Orange Line Traction Power Substation upgrades: Work began in spring 2015

The following projects are now complete:

  • Rehabilitation of Orange Line test track: Completed summer 2018
  • Storage track expansions at Wellington Yard: Completed spring 2019

    Diversions

    Building a Better T

    As part of our $8 billion, 5-year capital investment plan, we're renovating stations, modernizing fare collection systems, upgrading services for our buses, subways, and ferries, and improving the accessibility of the entire system.

    Learn more


    Orange Line Signal Upgrades

    The train detection electronics and relays inside the signal bungalow at Forest Hills Station will be replaced.

    The analog signal system on the Orange Line will be fully replaced with new, digital infrastructure.

    • Contract awarded: November 2018
    • Projected completion: Summer 2022
    • Budget: $217 million (total value for Orange Line and Red Line signal upgrades)
    • Status: Design phase one completed, final design phase expected to be complete by summer 2021

    New Orange Line Vehicles

    New Orange Line train at Assembly Station

    The Orange Line fleet will be entirely replaced with modern, more efficient, more spacious vehicles by 2023.

    • Contract awarded: 2014
    • Projected completion: 2023
    • Budget: $1 billion (total value for Orange Line and Red Line new vehicles)
    • Status: Three new train sets accepted for passenger service; up to 14 new trains in service during peak commuting times; more cars in testing

    Recent Updates

    View all project updates


    Wellington Yard and Maintenance Facility Updates

    We are updating the Wellington Yard facility where we store and care for Orange Line vehicles

    Wellington Yard, the facility where we store and care for Orange Line vehicles each day, will be updated for safer, more efficient maintenance.

    Wellington Yard Rebuild

    • Contract awarded: 2018
    • Projected completion: Summer 2022
    • Budget: $103 million
    • Status: 53% complete as of January 2021

    Wellington Maintenance Facility

    • Contract awarded: 2017
    • ​​​​​​​ Projected completion: Summer 2022
    • ​​​​​​​ Budget: $77 million
    • ​​​​​​​ Status: 77% complete as of January 2021

    Orange Line Traction Power Substation Upgrades

    We’re upgrading four Orange Line Traction Power Substations (TPS) with new facilities and equipment. The upgraded substations will support the new fleet of Orange Line vehicles for the next 25 years.

    • Contract awarded: Spring 2015
    • Projected completion: Fall 2025
    • Budget: $37 million
    • Status: 77% complete as of January 2021

    Photo Gallery

    Contact Information

    For all queries and comments related to Orange Line Improvement Program, please contact RedOrangeLineProgram@MBTA.com.

    Related Projects

    Diversions

    Building a Better T

    As part of our $8 billion, 5-year capital investment plan, we're renovating stations, modernizing fare collection systems, upgrading services for our buses, subways, and ferries, and improving the accessibility of the entire system.

    Learn more

    Recent Updates

    View all project updates