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Governor Charlie Baker

MassDOT August
Board Meeting

September 12
Transportation Building
10 Park Plaza
Second Floor Board Room
Boston, MA 02150
Full Meeting Schedule

On the MassDOT Blog

A First in the State: MassDOT Uses New Construction Technique on Route 2/I-95 Project

From smaller projects to the largest, MassDOT uses the latest, proven innovative techniques. For the first time in the state, MassDOT is using precast, modular concrete abutments on the Route 2/I-95 Bridge Replacement Project.

Accelerated Bridge Construction technologies, such as this one, reduce project duration significantly by shifting construction of some elements off-site. This also saves money and limits traffic impacts and road closures.

View the entire New Construction Technique blog post.

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September 2, 2016

Labor Day Travel: Plan Ahead

MassDOT encourages the public to travel safely during the upcoming Labor Day holiday weekend, drive during lower volume times on major roadways, and use public transportation where possible. MassDOT suspends all construction work on major arterial roadways from 12 p.m., Friday, September 2, through the start of normal business hours on Tuesday, September 6.

tolling gantry

The U.S Army Corps of Engineers reports that there will be no lane restrictions on the Sagamore Bridge during the Labor Day holiday weekend. MassDOT reminds motorists to avoid any distractions while driving and be constantly alert when driving in and around work zones where normal conditions may be changed- traffic lanes closed, narrowed, or shifted, and speed limits reduced.

Drivers can save time and fuel by joining E-ZPass to avoid waiting in line at cash toll booths. Travelers are reminded that the Tobin Bridge has converted to the All-Electronic Tolling system and drivers using the Tobin with no E-ZPass may travel the bridge and will be mailed a bill via the Pay-by-Plate program.

Free coffee will be served at the 18 MassDOT service plazas from 10 pm Monday, September 5, through 5 am Tuesday morning, September 6. The plazas serving free coffee include 11 service plazas along I-90 plus plazas along Route 3 in Plymouth, Route 128 in Beverly, Route 128/I-95 in Newton and Lexington, Route 6 in Barnstable, and the Route 24 northbound and southbound plazas.

Travelers are encouraged to plan ahead, allow extra time for travel, and take advantage of the many communication tools now available to help trips go smoothly.

For traffic and road conditions, drivers may use the following options to make decisions:

  • Customers may dial 511 and select a route to hear real-time conditions
  • Visit mass511.com, a website which provides real-time traffic and incident advisory information
  • Access MassDOT traffic cameras to view images covering portions of Route 3, Route 6, Route 28, and parts of I-90, I-91, I-93, and I-95
  • Download Waze, the real-time traffic navigation app that provides motorists with real-time traffic conditions across Massachusetts.
  • Download the Ridewise app. Customers may use Ridewise to obtain travel times for various routes including Route 3, Route 6, I-93 and portions of I-90. The app is available on Android and iPhone. Drivers are advised not to use the app if they are operating a motor vehicle.

MassDOT’s Highway Assistance Patrol program, sponsored by MAPFRE Insurance, patrols routes in Metro Boston, Worcester, Springfield & Cape Cod (seasonal) during peak coverage hours, Monday - Friday, 6:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. with extended hours on the Massachusetts Turnpike (I-90) and extended holiday routes in heavy traffic areas. In addition to the HAP vehicles, MassDOT operates an Incident Response Vehicle fleet of flatbed tow trucks, also sponsored by MAPFRE Insurance. IRV's assigned to Interstate 93, the Maurice Tobin J. Memorial Bridge, Ted Williams Tunnel, Sumner Tunnel and Callahan Tunnel patrol 7 days a week, 24 hours a day.

The CapeFLYER weekend rail service to Cape Cod will make its final run of the season and operate on a Saturday/Sunday schedule on Monday, September 5.

The MBTA will operate on a Sunday schedule on Monday, September 5.

All Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles Offices offices will be closed on Monday, September 5, in observance of the holiday.

Drivers are reminded to avoid littering on roadways. Violators are subject to a fine of up to $5,500 for the first offense.


All Electronic Tolling Fare Structure Public Meetings Set

tolling gantry

MassDOT is convening public hearings on toll structure changes within I-90, (the Massachusetts Turnpike), and the Metropolitan Highway System, which includes the Boston tunnels and the Tobin Memorial Bridge.

The proposed changes include changes in the toll collection gantry locations and rates through the implementation of all electronic tolling (AET) along the Massachusetts Turnpike and the Metropolitan Highway System. MassDOT announced that AET will “go live” on October 28.

All public meetings begin at 6:30PM and are scheduled as follows:

  • Tuesday, September 6th, Worcester - Union Station, 2 Washington St. Wednesday, September 7th, Lynn - North Shore Community College, 300 Broad St.
  • Monday September 12th, Newton City Hall - War Memorial Room, 1000 Commonwealth Ave.
  • Tuesday, September 13th, Framingham Town Hall - Nevins Hall, 150 Concord St.
  • Wednesday, September 14th, Springfield City Hall - 36 Court St.
  • Wednesday, September 14th, Allston - Jackson Mann School, 40 Armington St.
  • Thursday, September 15th, Lenox - Highway District 1 Headquarters, 270 Main St.

In addition, written comments will be accepted for 2 weeks following the hearings, until 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, September 29, 2016.


MBTA: Year-Round Student Pass Program About to Begin

Under an expansion of the Student Pass program approved by the MBTA’s Fiscal and Management Control Board, effective September 1, students with a Student CharlieCard will pay half-price per trip on all modes of transit and may obtain a monthly bus and subway pass for $30, even if their schools do not purchase the Student Pass for them.

logo

The changes will expand access to reduced-fare transit passes for middle and high school students, helping thousands of young people throughout the Greater Boston area travel to school and part-time jobs.

"MassDOT and the MBTA are striving to provide transportation options for our youth that are reliable year-round, and ensure that these options are easily accessible," said MassDOT Secretary and CEO Stephanie Pollack. "Investing in the continued development of our young people by facilitating their travel is a good investment in the future of our state."

"Having a strong Student Pass program can make a huge difference in the lives of young people who rely heavily on public transportation to get to school or extracurricular activities or jobs," said MBTA General Manager Brian Shortsleeve.

"This change will increase access to opportunities for thousands of middle and high school students in the Boston region," said FMCB member Brian Lang. "An unlimited year-round affordable T pass decreases barriers for low-income students to reach school, jobs, and community activities."

In March, the Fiscal Management and Control Board voted to significantly increase access to the Student Pass. The change was made after the MBTA heard from students who did not have access to the Student Pass, but would benefit from it.

The board voted to make the Student Pass available year round at all MBTA fare vending machines and retail sales terminals for all students with a Student CharlieCard. This change will take effect on September 1, 2016, when students return to school.

The MBTA offers two types of student fares. With a Student CharlieCard, students pay half price per trip on all modes. The MBTA also offers a monthly Student Pass for $30. Previously the Student Pass was only distributed through participating schools. During the 2015-2016 school year approximately 50,000 students received or purchased a Student Pass from their school and another approximately 30,000 students received the Student CharlieCard that allows for half priced fares. Almost none of these students had access to student fares or the pass during summer months.

Starting September 1, all of the students receiving the Student CharlieCard will now be able to access the unlimited ride Student Pass in addition to the half priced fares. And all of the students in the Boston region will be able to use student fares during the following summer.

This change will significantly increase the opportunities for Boston’s students to access school, work, and extracurricular activities.

The MBTA Student Pass program is a partnership between the MBTA and the Boston Public Schools and over 270 area schools. Schools administer the program for their students and still have the choice to pay for the Student Pass for their students.

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