Harvard University on Wednesday offered to nearly double its contribution to bring new train service to Allston, hoping to prod the state to accelerate its plans for a commuter station seen as crucial to developing a neighborhood just off the Massachusetts Turnpike.
The university’s $58 million commitment, outlined in a letter this week to the state Department of Transportation, comes in response to the department’s recent decision to delay the opening of the new West Station to as late as 2040, at the tail end of the massive Mass. Pike realignment project. Earlier plans had called for the station to open as soon as 2020.
Harvard wants some of its contribution to fund a new, no-frills version of the station that could be opened by the mid-2020s.