Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tie replacement for MBTA's Old Colony Line

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Massachusetts Bay Commuter Railroad Company said that as the result of a critical ongoing concrete tie replacement project on the Old Colony Line, a new schedule for the Middleboro/Lakeville, and Plymouth/Kingston and Greenbush lines will go into effect on January 11, 2010. These schedule changes better reflect actual travel times that have resulted following implementation of a 50 mile-per-hour speed restriction, which is essential for safe travel on the line.

Beginning in January, morning rush hour trains originating from Middleboro and Kingston will commence five to ten minutes earlier than the present schedule, which will preserve existing arrival times at South Station for the inbound morning rush hour. The scheduled departure times for evening rush hour trains leaving South Station will not change but, as a result of the speed restrictions, evening rush hour trains will arrive at their final destination five to ten minutes later than presently scheduled.

The tie replacement work is the result of deteriorating concrete rail ties that were installed in the mid-1990s on the Middleboro/Lakeville and Plymouth/Kingston Lines. After track inspections detected deterioration of tie integrity beginning in late 2007, rail crews inserted extra wooden ties to maintain full track alignment - allowing normal travel speeds.

In September, MBCR began to remove deteriorated concrete ties and replace them with new wood ties. This project will continue this season until weather conditions prohibit further installation work.

Concrete tie replacement will continue in the spring of 2010 and continue throughout the year.

As a safety precaution, daily track inspections have taken place since early 2008 and throughout 2009.

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