21st-Century Transportation: MBTA Governance and Transformation

In response to MBTA failures during the winter of 2015, Governor Baker created a special panel to review MBTA’s operations and finances. This panel established a Fiscal and Management Control Board (FMCB) to ensure that the incidents, that left people literally out in the cold, would not repeat.

Despite initial skepticism, the board made smart investments in infrastructure, offered unprecedented transparency, and provided a dedicated venue to address public concerns.

As the legislature contemplates the MBTA’s future governance structure, Conservation Law Foundation, MASSPIRG, the MBTA Advisory Board, and Transportation for Massachusetts offer recommendations for the successor board. The goal of these recommendations is to build on the Control Board’s successes to achieve a 21st-century rider-focused transportation system.

In brief, our future transit system must be safe, reliable, affordable, and accessible to:

  • motivate people to shift out of their single-occupancy cars and trucks and onto transit;
  • promote transportation justice by better serving all riders; and
  • cut climate-damaging emissions and air pollution that harms public health.