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MBTA: Sit back, forget the car, leave the driving to us
By Christopher A. Szechenyi, Boston.com Staff, 07/07/00
BOSTON -- Forget about your car.
If you’re a commuter or one of the four million people expected to head into Boston to work or watch the Parade of Tall Ships on Tuesday, authorities have just three words of advice:
“Take the T.”
“Don’t drive,” said Mariellen Burns, director of media relations for the Boston Police Department. “If you’re not a resident of the neighborhood with the best viewing place, it’s going to be very difficult to get into those areas.”
On Tuesday morning, the MBTA is going to run extra buses, trains and boats to accommodate the masses of people flooding into Boston.
The T will run a $2 bus shuttle from the JFK Library-University of Massachusetts station on the red line to Castle Island, beginning at 7 a.m. and ending at 7 p.m.
The Hingham-to-Boston commuter boat will start its first run at 5 a.m., an hour earlier than usual, and the last morning departure will be 8:45 a.m. from Hingham. (The Coast Guard is closing the harbor just before the Parade begins at 9:30, so T officials have cancelled the 9:15 boat and others normally scheduled.
Service will resume around 4 p.m. at Rowe's Wharf once the parade is over.
If the Coast Guard hasn’t reopened the harbor by 4 p.m., commuters can take the red line to Quincy Center and pick up a special shuttle bus to Hingham.
“We don’t want to leave anyone stranded in town when they’re trying to head home,” said Joe Pesaturo, a spokesman for the T.
“We’re also urging people to use the Route 128 commuter rail station in Westwood because there’s a parking garage with 1,400 spaces available,” Pesaturo said, noting the line will have extra trains running on it that day.
“The train from there will take you into South Station, where you can walk to the waterfront or take the red line to the shuttle to Castle Island.”
The T is also increasing service on its subway lines and streetcars elsewhere in the city, Pesaturo said.
Once the Tall Ships are open to the public later in the week, the T will bus people for $2 from South Station to the Black Falcon Terminal, and from the Orange Line’s Sullivan Square Station in Charlestown to the Navy Yard between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m.
The T will also run expanded evening and weekend service on its inner harbor ferry routes. Boats will depart from the Navy Yard for Long Wharf every 15 minutes from Wednesday through Saturday.
During that period, a ferry will also leave every 30 minutes from the Lovejoy Wharf at North Station to go the World Trade Center.
The commuter lines out of North Station on July 15 will run on their normal schedule with additional service on the Lowell, Haverhill, Fitchberg and Newburport lines to accommodate people who want to take a last opportunity to see the ships before they depart.
“We anticipate the biggest crowds of the week (next) Saturday,” Pesaturo said. To take care of the crowds, the T plans added service out of South Station on the Attleboro and Franklin lines.
On July 16, when the Tall Ships leave, the harbor will again be closed to ferry traffic. The T plans to run its bus shuttles again from the JFK station to Castle Island. And commuter service into South Station and North Station that day will run as if it were Saturday’s stepped up schedule.
“There’s more than a year’s worth of planning that has gone into this,” Pesaturo said.