Sunday, October 07, 2012

The Grand Junction Railroad, Subway Planning, the Cambridge, MA, USA Administration and Reality.

PREQUIL. Why the lies on subway possibilities?
1. MBTA Urban Ring, BU Bridge Crossing, Cambridge Side
2. MBTA Urban Ring, Kenmore Crossing.
3. MBTA Urban Ring, Boston Side.
A. General Map.
B. BU Bridge Crossing.
C. MBTA Urban Ring, Boston Side, Kenmore Crossing.
4. Reality and the Cambridge Administration.
POSTSCRIPT, history of this report.

PREQUIL. Why the lies on subway possibilities?

The Cambridge Administration has spent ten or twenty years lying that there is only one option under consideration for Urban Ring rail. This is the option which would further destroy the Charles River animal habitat next to the BU Bridge. Since Cambridge is working with state bureaucrats to kill off animals all over the place, that makes sense to them.

Their position is not only false but the legislature is spending millions subsidizing the upgrade of Yawkey Station which is part of the responsible alternative. And Yawkey Station would have to be moved under the alternative which Cambridge lies is the only alternative being considered.

Plus, of the two alternatives, the Kenmore Crossing (which Cambridge says does not exist) is the only meaningful alternative for environmental and transportation considerations. A common situation with regard to Cambridge’sdestructive policies: spouted as the only reasonable course when reality is the opposite.

All of these maps are documents from the MBTA, the local transit company.

1. MBTA Urban Ring, BU Bridge Crossing, Cambridge Side

This is the alternative for which the Cambridge Administration puts out a pretty much non stop lie that it is the only alternative under consideration. The long hashed line parallel to and crossing the Charles River and having two dots on it is the proposed streetcar / light rail line.

The dot in the very middle of the picture is an station at Massachusetts Avenue in the middle of the MIT campus. The dot to the very left is a station at Putnam Avenue in Cambridge. The crossing would be to the immediate east of the Grand Junction line, apparently breaking off to go underground after going under Memorial Drive, thus directly impacting and harming the wildlife habitat south of Memorial Drive including the nesting area of the Charles River White Geese.

Even a brief review of this photo demonstrates very severe harm to their habitat.

2. MBTA Urban Ring, Kenmore Crossing.

In this alternative, the Mass. Ave. Station continues to exist but, quickly after going under Mass. Ave., the Heavy Rail / Orange Line alternative swings south. First it goes under the MIT playing fields and then it goes under the Charles River, a much less environmentally destructive option.

The Cambridge Administration has spent ten or twenty years saying that this alternative does not exist.

It is environmentally responsible in dramatic contrast to the Administration’s falsely described “only” route.

It has been subsidized by millions of dollars from the Legislature to upgrade Yawkey Station in place. Yawkey station in its current location is a key part of the Kenmore Crossing. The Cambridge Administration’s “only” route would require Yawkey Station to be moved a half mile or more.

3. MBTA Urban Ring, Boston Side.

Three maps follow the text in this letter. [Ed: in this reprint, these three maps are inserted with the text.] The first is the MBTA’s unedited presentation of the two alternatives on the Boston side. This is followed by my edit emphasizing the BU Bridge Crossing and my edit emphasizing the Kenmore Crossing. These maps are presented separately from text because trying to combine text and maps has confused my computer, even after upgrading the computer.

A. General Map.

This map is a good way to compare the relative locations of the two options and to see almost all the shared part.

The shared part is in the lower extreme of the map. The alternate lines are shown by moderately heavy broken lines.

The BU Bridge Crossing curves down from the left and meets the Kenmore Crossing which is a straight line top to bottom. The two lines meet under Brookline Avenue just before Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and curve in deep bore construction under BIDMC.

The wider black rectangle just after the curve ends is the proposed Longwood Medical Area Station under Longwood Avenue at Louis Pasteur Boulevard.

The line curves just before Huntington Avenue under the Massachusetts College of Art. It then curves again at Ruggles Street under undeveloped property of the Wentworth Institute of Technology. It ends at Ruggles Station on the Orange Line which is just off the map at bottom right.

Ruggles Station is off the map at bottom right.

B. BU Bridge Crossing.

The BU Bridge crossing would be constructed under University Road, which works as an on and off ramp for east bound traffic on Soldiers Field Road / Storrow Drive.

The path is hard to make out. At the top of the map, just south of the Charles River, the path is just to the left of “BU”. It turns and comes to a black rectangle indicating the combined Urban Ring station at St. Mary’s and the relocated Yawkey Station. Connection to the Green Line Commonwealth Avenue branch is by tunnel under St. Mary’s dropping people on the south sidewalk of Commonwealth Avenue.

The route then turns at Park Drive and comes to another underground station between a new Green Line Station under Beacon Street (Green Line, Cleveland Circle branch) and the Riverside Station (Riverside Branch of the Green Line).

These two stations attempt to duplicate the function of the Urban Ring station in the Kenmore Crossing located between Yawkey and Kenmore Stations and creating one big megastation.

The necessary new station on the Cleveland Circle line (C branch) at Beacon and Park Drive to make the connection with the Urban Ring streetcar is not shown on the map.

C. MBTA Urban Ring, Boston Side, Kenmore Crossing.

The Kenmore Crossing tunnel runs under Raleigh Street in eastern Kenmore Square.

As shown, the Kenmore Crossing would have a new station under Brookline Avenue with direct connections to Yawkey Station, Kenmore Station and Fenway Park, creating covered connections among Commuter Rail, Urban Ring and the three Green Line Branches.

The new station shows on the map as a solid rectangle rising to the right slightly more than half an inch below “Kenmore Square.”

Yawkey Station shows on the map as the less large black rectangle above and to the left of the proposed Urban Ring station.

The legislature is spending millions upgrading Yawkey Station. Thus, Yawkey Station is not going anywhere, contrary to the needs of the BU Bridge Crossing.

The legislature has spent millions subsidizing the Kenmore Crossing and making the alternative the Cambridge Administration claims does not exist (Kenmore Crossing) much more likely than the one the Cambridge The Cambridge Administration claims is the only one Crossing that exists (BU Bridge Crossing).

The Kenmore Crossing line proceeds under Brookline Ave., going under BIDMC as shown on the General Map.

4. Reality and the Cambridge Administration.

The Cambridge Administration and its activists and influenced organizations have spent years denying the existence of the Kenmore Crossing.

They have no meaningful argument for the BU Bridge Crossing.

The Kenmore Crossing is far superior both from an environmental and a transportation point of view. It has now received millions of dollars in subsidies in the legislature’s funds for the upgrading of Yawkey Station in place.

It is hard to escape the obvious strategy of the Cambridge Administration.

When you cannot possibly win on the merits, lie.

So they simply and repeatedly for very many years have denied that the Kenmore Crossing exists.

POSTSCRIPT, history of this report.

This report was submitted a few weeks ago to the Cambridge City Council as an appendix to my letter objecting to plans to attack the Charles River White Geese and other resident animals by destroying their tiny remaining urban wild by ringing the main portion with a new highway and splitting it off from the adjacent urban wild with a fence.

In this printing, I have cleaned up presentation of the plans (computer problem off line), and corrected one distressing typo.

The Cambridge City Clerk’s posting of the letter may be seen as appendix 1 at

The rather clear pattern of dishonesty on this matter very much fits the large scale existence of “independent” organizations with interlocking friendships to the Cambridge Administration. My report on the passing of the first of the City of Cambridge’s City Manager regency went into massive environmental destruction with such a group in the middle of it.

The situation has simply gotten much more massive and more destructive since then.