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Orient Heights Station closure to begin Saturday, last seven months

Posted by Jeremy C. Fox  March 20, 2013 12:05 PM

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Blue Line at Maverick.jpg

Jeremy C. Fox for Boston.com

A Blue Line train enters Maverick Station in East Boston.

Orient Heights Station on the MBTA’s Blue Line will close for about seven months starting Saturday, March 23, with shuttle buses running between that station and Suffolk Downs Station, the MBTA announced.

In an advisory on its website, the MBTA advised travelers needing access to the Orient Heights area to exit the Blue Line at Suffolk Downs Station and board shuttle buses on the side of the station nearer the track, in the Walley Street busway. At Orient Heights Station, shuttles will pick up passengers in the Bennington Street busway and carry them to Suffolk Downs Station.

To access 712/713 buses on weekdays, passengers should exit the Blue Line at Wood Island Station. Buses will stop at Saratoga Street and St. Edwards Road in the Orient Heights area, the MBTA said. On weekends, it will be necessary to exit the Blue Line at Airport Station to access 712/713 buses.

The 120 bus will continue to operate in the Bennington Street busway at Orient Heights Station, and the station’s parking area will remain open, with pedestrian access at Saratoga Street only, the MBTA said.

The station closure will enable work to proceed on a $51 million project to renovate and modernize the 60-year-old station, the MBTA said. It is planned to bring the station into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, along with state and MBTA standards.

Included in the overhaul will be a new pedestrian bridge, four elevators, two escalators, new platforms, new mechanical systems, and other improvements. Construction is scheduled to be complete by spring 2014.

Along with the station closure, shuttle buses will replace Blue Line train service between Airport Station and Wonderland Station for an estimated 13 weekends during 2013, the MBTA website said. Dates for those weekend diversions have not been announced.

For more information about the station closure and related diversions, click here or contact the MBTA Customer Communications Department at 617-222-3200, TTY: 617-222-5146.

Jeremy C. Fox can be reached at jeremy.fox@globe.com.
Follow him on Twitter: @jeremycfox.
Matt Rocheleau can be reached at mjrochele@gmail.com.
Follow East Boston on Twitter: @YourEastBoston.

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