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Governor Patrick Celebrates Ashmont Station Completion

 

Governor Deval Patrick joined MassDOT Secretary Richard A. Davey, federal, state and local officials to celebrate the reconstruction of Ashmont Station on the MBTA's Red Line in Dorchester. The $84 million Ashmont Station reconstruction is the last of four Dorchester stations to be modernized as part of the Red Line Rehabilitation Project, an overall $158 million investment.


MassDOT RMV Services: Saugus AAA

MassDOT Registrar of Motor Vehicles Rachel Kaprielian this week joined AAA Southern New England President and CEO Mark Shaw at the AAA branch in Saugus to launch the newest MassDOT/AAA partnership location to offer Registry services.


Date: 10/28/2011

New Starts Grant Upgrades Fitchburg Rail Line

MassDOT Secretary Richard Davey this week joined Congressman John Olver, Congresswoman Niki Tsongas, and Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Administrator Peter Rogoff in Littleton to officially announce $75 million in FTA New Starts funding for the Fitchburg Commuter Rail Line Improvement Project. “This investment in the Fitchburg Line will reduce travel times for commuters, while expanding service to underserved regions of the Commonwealth,” said Governor Deval Patrick.

The MBTA along with the Montachusett Regional Transit Authority are making extensive improvements to modernize the Fitchburg Rail Line and provide greatly improved service and reliability to riders and commuters in the 50-mile long corridor from Fitchburg to Boston.

“As we continue to improve passenger rail service, upgrades to the Fitchburg Line will make a real difference for commuters while also enhancing opportunities for regional economic growth, “said Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray.

The Fitchburg Commuter Rail Line Improvement Project is a $159 million project including the $75 million federal New Starts Program grant with state matching funds, creating 260 jobs. The work will include the installation of new switches and signals as well as two new renovated stations and the reconstruction of existing track on the state's oldest commuter rail line, serving 17 communities at 18 rail stations.

Funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act are also supporting a double track project as part of the overall effort to improve the Fitchburg Line and reduce travel times.


MBTA Kingston Wind Turbine

MassDOT Secretary Richard A. Davey this week joined state and local officials to break ground on the Kingston Wind Turbine Program at the Kingston Layover Facility. The 100-kilowatt wind turbine will power 65 percent of the Kingston commuter rail station's energy supply. The $2.5 million American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) project builds on the Patrick-Murray Administration's investment in transportation infrastructure and is another step toward a more energy efficient Commonwealth.

The $2.5 million ARRA Transit Investments Generating Greenhouse Gas and Energy Reductions grant funds the 120-foot-tall turbine that will power the station's energy supply to the parking lot, station platforms, and plug--ins for locomotives. The grant also funds a second 300-kilowatt turbine to be installed along the commuter rail tracks in Bridgewater. The two wind turbines when operational will save the MBTA approximately $100,000 annually in electricity costs.

The wind turbine will be constructed on the north side of the commuter rail tracks between the maintenance and substation structures. Construction will begin immediately


MassDOT RMV Promotes School Bus Safety

MassDOT Registry of Motor Vehicles inspectors and local police handed out 110 citations in 160 cities and towns during a statewide undercover operation targeting drivers who illegally pass school buses while picking up and dropping off students.

This is the seventh year the RMV has organized "Operation Yellow Blitz" to put a spotlight on the danger such activity poses on a daily basis. "We want to get the word out that drivers on both sides of the road need to stop when school buses pick up or drop off children," said Registrar Rachel Kaprielian who accompanied the surveillance team in Watertown last week. "Those who would ignore a stopped school bus risk injuring a child. Without exception, all traffic approaching a school bus with red flashing lights must stop."

Registrar Kaprielian said the number of participating communities increases every year, up from 30 in 2007 and 110 in 2009, and that Operation Yellow Blitz results reveal that while many people are conscientious while driving near a school bus, there is still an alarming lack of awareness

School bus drivers, police and parents frequently inform the RMV of the danger posed by motorists who refuse to stop for a school bus. Violators face a $250 citation for a first offense and $1,000 fine and six month license suspension for a second violation within two years.

Operation Yellow Blitz is an annual program targeting problem intersections and roadways. But school bus drivers are on the lookout for non-compliant drivers every day. Drivers write down offending driver license plate numbers and report them to the RMV. Repeat violators face the possibility of an administrative hearing that can result in a driver’s license suspension or revocation. In 2010, the RMV sent out 2,154 warning letters. So far this year, 1,625 warning letters have gone out.


MassDOT Board November Public Meeting

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation Board of Directors will hold its next regular public business meeting on Wednesday, November 2, 1:00pm, MBTA Board Room, Suite 3910, State Transportation Building, Boston.    

 The MBTA Board will meet first at 1pm, followed by the MassDOT Board.  All meetings are open to the public. The meeting schedule is available on the MassDOT website.

http://www.massdot.state.ma.us/BoardsCommittees/BoardofDirectors/BoardMeetings.aspx

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