Customer service along the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority’s (MBTA) most popular bus route will be significantly enhanced as part of a construction contract awarded last week by the MassDOT board of directors.
Funded entirely by a grant from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the $3.4 million project includes a series of improvements to the Silver Line’s fourteen stations along Washington St. in Roxbury and the South End.
Under its contract with the MBTA, S & R Construction will install new laminated glass windscreens at each shelter to shield customers from wind and rain while maximizing the impact of newly-installed overhead heating units.
The Silver Line’s 15,000 daily customers will also enjoy a smoother ride following pavement repairs in the bus lanes and at deteriorated crosswalks, where cobblestones will be replaced by asphalt between Melnea Cass Blvd. and Herald St. Approximately sixteen construction trades workers will be hired for the project.
"The Governor and Lieutenant Governor have made customer service in transportation a top priority. These investments in the Silver Line corridor which serves large number of our customers are an example of how that priority is being put into action. And, we are not done. More improvements are coming next year, and we are working closely with the city, local leaders, and citizens of the area on ways to improve connections to Dudley from points south to Mattapan Square. The Governor is serious about the need to make real improvements in these areas," said MassDOT Secretary and CEO Jeffrey Mullan.
“These upgrades could not have come at a better time for the T’s first Bus Rapid Transit Line, which turns nine years old next year,” said MBTA General Manager Richard Davey. “Ridership has increased by more than 2,000 customers a day since the introduction of service to South Station last year.”
Next year, workers will begin a second phase of improvements at the Silver Line’s terminus at Dudley Station, where the MBTA recently opened a Transit Police kiosk. The project at Dudley includes the construction of a public restroom, repaving work, and the installation of heating units and two-sided electronic message boards at multiple bus platforms.