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Governor Charlie Baker

MassDOT December
Board Meeting

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

On the MassDOT Blog

MassDOT: Plan Ahead During Winter Driving Season
winter traffic

MassDOT advises travelers to drive safely and plan ahead as Winter driving season is now in full swing.

Drivers are encouraged to lower their speeds during inclement weather and use the appropriate resources to make an informed decision regarding their travel plans. MassDOT strongly urges drivers to always wear their seatbelts, minimize distractions, turn off or putt away cellphones and devote their full attention to what is ahead on the road.

View the entire Green Line Extension Meeting blog post.

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December 9, 2016

All Electronic Tolling Update: Travel Times, Next Phase Work

ribboncutting

MassDOT is pleased to announce that it is continuing the process of road reconstruction and toll plaza infrastructure demolition activities following the implementation of the All Electronic Tolling (AET) program on October 28 on I-90 between New York to Boston

"All Phase One toll plaza demolition work was completed ahead of schedule and work continues to progress on schedule for the next phases of road reconstruction in 23 work zones," said Transportation Secretary and CEO Stephanie Pollack. "The transition to All Electronic Tolling has been a smooth one and we believe the public has started to realize the goals of the program which include increasing safety, some relief from traffic congestion and a reduction in greenhouse gases."

"This project is a true testament to the hard work and thoughtful planning MassDOT personnel and contractors put into construction activities," said Highway Administrator Thomas J. Tinlin. "We had a safe transition from manual collection and we've had a large number of drivers applying for free transponders in order to get the E-ZPassMA discount. All in all it's been a successful transition and we have appreciated the public's patience in traveling through work zones and the dedication of crews in working around the clock to complete this project on time."

MassDOT reports that overhead tolling gantries have registered more than 50 million transactions since All Electronic Tolling began on October 28. Toll demolition and roadway reconstruction continues to trend on schedule at all 23 work zones and with Phase One work completed ahead of schedule in time for the Thanksgiving holiday travel week, which reportedly saw less severe congestion than in previous years.

MassDOT says several important achievements have been realized, including:

  • Travel time data during weekday morning hours shows that drivers traveling eastbound along I-90 from I-495 to the I-90 “boat section” in South Boston saw up to 12 minutes of travel time savings during Stage 2 construction, on average, when compared to the weeks prior to the toll demolition project.
  • A record number of transponders are assigned to vehicles, with 3,051,886 Massachusetts E-ZPass transponders now in circulation, as of December 5.
  • Between October 28 and December 4, the overhead tolling gantries registered 50.3 million transactions.
  • Since October 28, 83% of the transactions have been automatically registered as valid E-ZPass transactions. Following manual image review, this percentage rose to approximately 86% which puts MassDOT above its goal of 85% E-ZPass market share.
  • From the inception of the program on October 28 to December 5, MassDOT mailed 589,787 Pay By Plate invoices to customers. (Pay By Plate customers are those vehicle owners with no transponder associated to the vehicle plate.)

MassDOT will continue to monitor traffic flow on I-90 during the winter months so construction activities can continue to be evaluated in regard to the impact on drivers.

Phase Two of the Toll Plaza Demolition and Road Reconstruction Project involves work on what had been the toll plaza areas to the left and right of the plaza in addition to the demolition of any toll administration buildings and any remaining tunnel infrastructure. Ongoing construction in work zones will also include finishing road drainage work, installing catch basins and culverts where needed, repaving road surfaces and adding lighting, guardrail, and other safety features. This work will occur throughout the winter, as weather permits. Crews will also be working under more traditional construction hours, rather than the 24/7 schedule that was part of the first phase. Each of the 23 work zones has its own management, design, and construction plan. Activities are scheduled to be completed by the end of calendar year 2017 in all work zones.

MassDOT recognizes that some travelers may be unaware of the transition to All Electronic Tolling and for that reason a “grace period” policy was implemented.

The policy means that drivers who do not have a transponder may, after receiving a Pay By Plate bill, choose to apply for a transponder and, after paying the invoice in full and opening an E-ZPass account, may then receive the transponder discount for that toll. The customer will receive an automatic credit on their new E-ZPass account equal to the difference between the Pay By Plate rate and E-ZPassMA rate.

For the first 6 months, this "grace period" will be offered on any Pay By Plate bill a customer receives, and then after 6 months, on the first Pay By Plate bill a new customer receives.

  • Since the inception of the program on October 28, there have been 502 Pay By Plate conversions.
  • MassDOT reminds customers that the easiest way to obtain a free a transponder or take advantage of the “grace period” is by going online to ezdrivema.com or by calling the service center at 1-877-627-7745. Customers may also visit locations in-person and the EZDriveMA website has a list of those locations.

MassDOT encourages drivers to continue to plan ahead, follow posted speed limits and use technology tools such as travel apps to make informed decisions before leaving home.

For more information about gantry rates and for other details about the implementation of the EZDriveMA program, please visit www.ezdrivema.com


Medford: Green Line Extension Public Meeting December 14

The Green Line Extension Project Interim Program Management Team will host a public meeting as follows:

Wednesday, December 14, 6:30 to 8:30 PM, Medford City Hall, Council Chambers, 85 George P. Hassett Drive

RMV logo

The purpose of the meeting will be to present a general update on:

  • The Status of the GLX Project
    • Introduction of the New Program Manager (John Dalton)
    • Work of the Interim Project Management Team
    • FTA requirements on the Funding Agreement
    • Upcoming Environmental Review
  • Design/Build Contractor Selection Process and timeline
  • Latest GLX project schedule
  • Update on the proposed Green Line Extension to Route 16 Environmental Notification Form (ENF)

There will be a sign-in sheet at the reception desk for those wishing to make public comment. Due to the limited time allotted for public comment, we ask that your comments be focused on topics covered in the meeting and kept to under two minutes.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at info@glxinfo.com


MBTA Future: Focus40 Seeks Your Ideas

Focus 40 logo

The Focus40 Street Team has been out at stops and stations around the system, collecting your ideas for the MBTA’s future. The Street Team is made up of MassDOT staff, community members, and partner organizations. We have already engaged with over 1,000 MBTA customers and received more than 1,500 ideas. The MBTA will be using these ideas to generate investment strategies to better serve the Boston region in the future.

If you missed the Street Team in your neighborhood, you can submit your ideas online until December 23. Please help us spread the word – share this link with anyone who may be interested. We want to hear from everyone who has a stake in the success of the MBTA – from everyday riders to those who live and work in the region but do not currently choose to use the system.

One idea that we’ve heard repeatedly is the need for faster and more reliable bus service. We are pleased to announce that the City of Everett is moving forward with a pilot project to help achieve this with a dedicated bus lane on portions of Broadway. This pilot, which was a recommendation of MassDOT’s recent Everett Transit Action Plan, could benefit the 5,000 daily riders in the corridor. Focus40 hopes to leverage municipal partnerships like this to advance bus improvements throughout the region.

If you have any questions or comments, or would like someone from the Focus40 Project Team to present at a community meeting, please contact MassDOT’s Project Manager, Scott Hamwey, 857-368-8900, or via email at focus40@dot.state.ma.us

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