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Slowdowns for the week ahead, and a surprise

Posted by Nichole Davis  June 22, 2012 01:13 AM

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Happy Friday to you! Hope you have some great weekend plans in store. I, for one, know that I will continue to stick in front of the air conditioning... at least for a while ...

Don't forget - Monday I'll get to your questions, and I have a LOT of them to answer! Thanks for all the input. I'm working on finding answers to as many as I can.

Let's get into it...

MBTA Matters

The Orange Line will be diverted again this weekend as crews continue work on the Assembly Square project. Buses will run as service from Oak Grove to Sullivan Square from the start of service Saturday until the end of service Sunday. Buses will make all stops between the two stations.

Also, busing will take place on the Blue Line between Wonderland and Revere Beach from the start of service Saturday to the end of service Sunday. They’re redirecting service to perform continuing work on the Blue Line Streetscape project. Buses will make all stops between those two stations as well.

Don’t forget: the elevator is still down at Porter Square on the Red Line. If you need elevator accessibility, the MBTA suggests you get off at Davis Square and request the special shuttle bus waiting to take you back to Porter. You can also get off at Harvard Square and take the 77 or 96 to Porter.

A nice surprise:

If you’re a Pike commuter, you know Friday nights (especially westbound) are just plain awful in the summertime. MassDOT Secretary Richard Davey announced yesterday that you’ll get a little help tomorrow - all drivers through the Allston/Brighton tolls (Exit 19) will not have to pay a fare between 5 and 6 pm. It’s thanks to the Boston Symphony Orchestra, who are using the opportunity to promote and celebrate Tanglewood’s 75th anniversary. The DOT says the BSO will front all cash and EZPass fares in that hour. If you’re an EZ Pass holder, you’ll see a message from the BSO about Tanglewood on your next statement, along with a credit. You do still have to stop at the toll to get the credit, but there will be much less of a wait. Enjoy!

You’ll find brake lights here...

Route 1 North at Essex Street, Saugus: utility work takes the right lane Sunday through Thursday. Expect delays.

93 in both directions at 128, Woburn (Exit 37): watch for off-ramp closures between 8 p.m. and 5 a.m. Sunday through Thursday. Also expect the two right travel lanes to be closed in both directions.

93 South by Purchase Street, in the O’Neill Tunnel (Exit 23): on-ramp is scheduled to be closed periodically from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. Sunday through Thursday.

128 Northbound between Route 109 (Exit 16) and Route 135 (Exit 17), Dedham: left lane is taken for road widening work during middays (9 a.m. to 3 p.m.) and overnights (8 p.m. to 5 a.m.). Expect significant delays.

Mass Pike East at the Prudential Center tunnel: All travel lanes are closed Sunday through Thursday, 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. Follow posted detours.

North Harvard Street over the Larz Anderson Bridge: Continual lane closures are in effect in both directions for bridge reconstruction work.

Tobin Bridge in both directions: Watch for continual lane closures as DOT crews continue to paint the bridge. These will be in effect until November.

Your apps

As promised, here’s a conglomeration of your favorite smartphone apps!

JRxxx says: "NextBus can be used by primitive wood-burning cell phones as well - you just have look up stop codes on the website; then text mbta xxxxx. Example "mbta 01372" if you're at Coolidge Corner waiting for a 66 bus going to Harvard Square. Even simple cell phones will generally let you memorize text messages as templates, so you can keep a few things on file."

TIMATOV remarks: “… as a true believer in public transportation (albeit one who is frequently frustrated by it) my i-Phone relies heavily on both the "Catch the Bus" and "Catch the T" apps available in the Apple "App" Store. Using both of these helps me figure out whether I should grab a bus, take the subway - or simply walk off my frustration.”

Billamulhey has another option: “Great website that doesnt require an "app" and works on the most basic of browsers including BB, IOS, and Android... If you have googlemaps, you can also tap/select MOST T stations for the train schedules. While the T is rarely on schedule especially during peak, it's a rough approximate and the departures from endpoints like Oak Grove on Orange are accurate within a minute or so.”

toolio says: “I use Pocket MBTA for keeping track of my bus lines on my iPhone. No complaints--although it is frustrating when the bus is stuck in traffic and the bus is 8 minutes away for a half hour. Still gives you a better idea of what's going on than just standing around waiting for a bus that may never come.....”

And, of course, let us not forget the wise words of MisterBeasley, which are very true: “Just don't play with those SmartPhone apps while driving, please. I wish it weren't necessary to say that.” (I wish it wasn’t, either.)

This blog is not written or edited by or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

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About the author

Nichole Davis is a Boston-based traffic reporter and news anchor. She’s been seen and heard on television and radio airwaves across New England since 2003, providing commuters with all the More »

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