MBTA Board Votes on Long-Term Commuter Rail Plan

A commuter rail train at South Station in Boston. Photo: 2p2play via Shutterstock

November 4, 2019 (BOSTON, MA) – Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) released the following statement today after the MBTA’s Fiscal Management Control Board voted in favor of an ambitious long-term plan for the commuter rail.

“Finally, this is the bold action we’ve been waiting for from the MBTA,” said Staci Rubin, Senior Attorney at CLF. “The region clearly needs people to ditch their cars and get onto trains before our highways turn into parking lots. Electrifying the commuter rail, especially in communities serving environmental justice populations, will go a long way in making that a reality. Fares must also be affordable for all so that riding the rails is a cheaper alternative to getting in the car.”

At today’s meeting, the board discussed the need for a visionary and equitable regional rail plan that will result in the greatest ridership. The board voted to approve five resolutions that implement electrified regional rail with short-term priority for lines that serve environmental justice populations, dedicate a new MBTA department focused on implementing the rail vision, expand opportunities for public-private partnerships, and create a visionary plan to revise the bus system.

CLF experts are available for further comment.