MBTA updates system maps, signage

Posted on September 21, 2009

Transportation officials today kicked off a program to replace the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority’s (MBTA) outdated system maps and signage with updated versions that include a variety of customer improvements. For example, for the first time ever the maps will display connections to key bus routes to and from subway stations.

One of Boston’s busiest stations, Government Center station is the first to showcase three brand new maps including: a line map identifying current stations along the Green Line that will replace a sign with outdated Green Line stops; a system map depicting connections to the subway and key routes; and a neighborhood map identifying places of interest in the surrounding Government Center area that has not been updated since station modernization in 1967.

The map initiative marks the beginning of a larger effort to provide customers with the tools necessary to better plan their commute, according to a MBTA officials. The announcement comes just weeks after the Patrick Administration and MBTA provided scheduling data online, resulting in the creation of at least four iPhone applications.

“Our priority first and foremost is to treat our customers with the respect they deserve and give them better tools to plan their commute,” said Transportation Secretary James A. Aloisi, Jr. “These maps will replace outdated, incorrect maps and will for the first time ever provide commuters and tourists with up-to-date information about our network of subway, bus, ferry and commuter rail lines.”

The replacement of outdated subway maps and signage throughout the subway system will continue with Orient Heights, Bowdoin and Copley Stations.

Acting MBTA General Manager William Mitchell said the time has most certainly come to replace the 1967 maps. "These maps were great when Yaz was hitting for the Triple Crown, but not today, while Ellsbury is stealing bases," said Mitchell.

Key components of the system-wide signage improvement initiative include:

  • New key bus route maps and neighborhood maps installed at transit stations with connections to key routes.
  • Smaller maps typically installed in buses and rail vehicles will be updated and replaced as needed.
  • Folded system maps and bus shelter maps will be updated to reflect various changes.
  • A program is under development to address outdated Commuter Rail maps including the installation of commuter rail maps at stations and major hubs and terminals.


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