Thursday, December 25, 2014

Charles River: Future Home of Cambridge / Grand Junction’s Commuter Trains?

Charles River: Future Home of Cambridge / Grand Junction’s Commuter Trains?

1. Introduction.
2. On Ground Photos, November 20, 2014.

1. Introduction.

I have previously reported in detail on the corrupt maneuvers by Cambridge / its friends to get Commuter Rail on the Grand Junction railroad in spite of no public notice and strong voter opposition.

The details were presented in my analyses to the state’s environmental people in two MEPA filings, posted as follows:

a. Rebuilding of I90 (Mass.Pike).


b. Expansion of South Station.

The game is that South Station is being expanded to accommodate commuter rail to Fall River and New Bedford, but the proposed expansion does not leave any room for anything else.  Thus ALL new commuter rail which would go to South Station will result in commuter rail traffic on the Grand Junction.

I presented a responsible alternative which expands on a proposal being propounded by folks who want a north-south rail connection between South Station and North Station (home of the Bruins and Celtics) in Boston.

Here is my mark up of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation’s map of the Grand Junction.  The thick arrows indicate the conflict with existing traffic.

On the Charles River, this will result in untold numbers of killings of the Charles River White Geese and other resident animals since these trains will be going as fast as they can get away with straight through their habitat.  Current trains are very limited, go slowly through the area and are operated by commendable train engineers.

Animal killings fit the goals of the Department of Conservation and Recreation which previously have been assisted by the Cambridge City Council.  They follow on mass killings as part of the destruction of 3.4 Alewife reservation by the two.

Cambridge's public position on heartless animal abuse is posted in a propaganda piece presented as some sort of show in the City Hall Annex:

There was added to the Mass. Pike project money to create a commuter rail station as part of the project after MassDOT declared the commuter rail station would not be part of the Mass. Pike project.

Here are maps of the Mass. Pike project area, first the current situation with my addition of a possible Green Line A spur connecting the area to the existing Green Line B in one direction and Harvard Station in the other, with two neighborhood stops and an added Boston University stop.

Second are the current plans being considered with NO MENTION that ALL trains from the proposed West Station would go through Cambridge (or alternate trains which fit the schedule better).  This plan is taken from the South Station filing.

The stunt was forced on MassDOT, it would appear.  West Station funding as part of the package was added after MassDOT announced the project without West Station.

2. On Ground Photos, November 20, 2014.

This area is the future home of Harvard’s Medical School and other facilities.

Repeating the photo I started with.

The solid walled building at the far right is a Boston University building which would abut West Station.    It shows on the plan from the South Station filing immediately below and at the middle of the plan.  It shows on the original Mass. Pike filing immediately abutting and to the right of the triangle.  The right side of the original plan is the bottom of the South Station plan.

Here are photos from the Cambridge Street end of the area.  The first photo looks under the soon to be demolished Mass. Pike through the access tunnel from Cambridge Street.  The opposite side is that portion of Cambridge Street where the bridge over the Mass. Pike starts, coming from Cambridge.

The following photos are panning to the right from pretty much the same spot.

And photos from the middle of the area, aimed toward Cambridge Street.  The second shows the current bridge where Cambridge Street is approaching the Charles River and Soldiers Field Road.