The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) is currently reviewing a variety of options around upgrading their commuter rail system. Specifically, the Authority is considering six options, with price tags of $1.7 billion to more than $28.9 billion.
According to the Gloucester Times, these options do not call for a fare increase. The Authority had a fare increase of 6% in July, and MBTA fare increases are restricted to 7% every two years by state law. Funding options for the expanded system are yet to be determined, but many support a private-public partnership or raising the gas tax.
The basic option calls for additional diesel-powered trains, like the ones that are running now, to allow more frequent service. The ultimate, and sixth, option calls for building an infrastructure that will allow electric-powered trains with departures every 15 minutes.
The electrified system seems to be getting the most support from politicians, as many believe that if a change is going to be made, it should be a resolute one.
Officials were scheduled to meet today to discuss the proposals, and RT&S will continue to report on developments around these expansion proposals.
For the latest news, go to rtands.com.