Friday, March 09, 2012

Archie on the MBTA

1. Archie Mazmanian Reports.
2. Editor’s response.

1. Archie Mazmanian Reports.

I was checking out the CHWG Blog this morning and after reading it I clicked on "Next Blog" out of curiousness and what popped up was the "Mass Sierra Club News" with its March 3, 2012 post "Boston Area Transit Under Threat" at

This reminded me that I have been derelict in not reporting on the Urban Ring "Revival Meeting" that we both attended on February 27th. You may recall that at the end of the public comment period, I made reference to the fact that the CAC's Agenda for that meeting was set on MassDOT letterhead that features this phrase (new to me) at the bottom:

"Leading the Nation in Transportation Excellence".

I suggested that MassDOT might add an asterisk after "Excellence" and note: "except for public transit."

I may have more to say about the "Revival Meeting" in due course. I don't plan to attend the upcoming meeting focusing on Melnea Cass Boulevard; if you do, I think your comments would be appropriate. Perhaps over the 20 years or so various segments of the Urban Ring will be patched together. By then Bus Rapid Transit may be replaced by more efficient technology.

Archie Mazmanian

2. Editor’s response.

I would like to attend the Melnea Cass meeting. I am not certain if I can.

A very major problem with the Massachusetts Sierra Club is the presence very visibly of members of Cambridge’s political machine with quite bad records on zoning issues. They submit zoning changes written by the Cambridge City Manager and, to no surprise, those proposals altogether too often have unexplained fine print which belies the lovely claims of the proposals. The secret fine print commonly is very destructive.

With such people in such a very visible location, the repeated endorsement by the Massachusetts Sierra Club of Cambridge City Councilors who are belligerently destructive of the environment comes as no surprise. It does, however, destroy the credibility of the Massachusetts Sierra Club as far the Charles River and the City of Cambridge goes.

As far as the Urban Ring meeting goes, there were points to be made, but I am still getting around to making them.

They had the Grand Junction passenger service on the agenda, but neglected to tell the members of the Committee that MassDOT has rejected passenger service on the Grand Junction for Worcester/Framingham service unless expansion of South Station is impossible.