The following is a press release from the Governor’s office.
NEWTON – Today, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito, Massachusetts Transportation Secretary and CEO Stephanie Pollack, MBTA General Manager Luis Ramírez, and others attended a display and unveiling of the new Green Line car at the Riverside Maintenance Facility.
The new cars will be put into passenger service incrementally, beginning in September and continuing into next year until all 24 are in service.
“Our administration continues to make significant investments across the entire MTBA system to improve service for all customers, including ordering new cars for the Green, Red, and Orange Lines,” said Governor Baker. “Ongoing track, signal and other core infrastructure upgrades for all branches of T will provide faster, more reliable service for travelers and commuters.”
“The addition of new cars into the existing fleet will improve travels for individuals in communities served by the Green Line,” said Lt. Governor Polito. “New features in these cars will increase capacity and enhance customer experience for riders along the entire Green Line.”
“This new Green Line car is an important milestone,” said Secretary Pollack. “New fleet vehicles, new and improved track, signals, and power systems mean better service for MBTA customers. Under the Baker-Polito Administration, the MBTA each year has funded hundreds of millions of dollars in core infrastructure work and fleet improvements and this new Green Line car is an example of the payoff to come for customers because of the high level of capital spending.”
“These new Green Line cars feature improvements for a more comfortable, more accessible commute,” said MBTA General Manager Luis Ramírez. “They include better access to priority seating, sliding doors, LCD destination monitors, more and better speakers, and more room. Coming in September when the first of twenty-four new cars goes into service, these new Green Line cars help give Green Line riders the commute they expect and deserve.”
Under a $118 million contract with the MBTA, CAF USA Inc. is manufacturing and delivering twenty-four low-floor light rail vehicles for the Green Line.
CAF utilized two locations to complete this order, using its facility in Spain to manufacture the shells and frames with final assembly and testing occurring at its manufacturing plant located in Elmira, New York. Twenty-four vehicles were required to increase the MBTA’s fleet size in order to maintain the Green Line’s current headways when the Green Line Extension (GLX) is completed. The procurement of these vehicles also helps to improve the overall reliability on the entire Green Line.
The new vehicles will incorporate a variety of new features to improve reliability, capacity, maintainability, safety, and comfort. New sliding doors will reduce interference with passengers on platforms and improve boarding and exiting. The new cars feature a 10 percent increase in passenger capacity due to upgraded interior designs.
Safety enhancements include the installation of the U.S.’s first Crash Energy Management (CEM) Structural Design on a light rail vehicle, which is compatible with the existing Green Line fleet and forward-compatible with future fleets. Advanced truck designs include better braking hardware and capacity for reduced maintenance and better reliability as well as thicker wheels for significantly reduced maintenance. Reliability will be further improved through the inclusion of dual auxiliary power systems.
Accessibility features include bridge plates installed internally for easy access and protection from the elements, additional accessible and priority seating, door locator tones, LCD destination monitors, interior destination signage, and increased speakers. Safety enhancements also include CCTV monitors, yellow grab railings, push-button stop-request functionality, and rear-view mirror monitors for Green Line operators.
New trolley cars are one of many improvements coming to the Green Line. Design and pre-construction work is underway on the GLX project, which will extend the Green Line approximately 4.7 miles along two branches from a re-located Lechmere Station in East Cambridge.
Heavy construction for GLX is expected to start this fall with the project scheduled to enter the testing phase in late 2020 and be fully operational in late 2021.
The first phase of the multi-phased Green Line Transformation Program will also address the immediate infrastructure needs of all Green Line branches with track replacement and signal upgrades coming to the D branch beginning this September.
Total Phase 1 investments including infrastructure, stations and customer-facing improvements, risk management and mitigation, and systemwide programs and on-call projects total $963.7 million ($739.9 million in FY19-23 CIP). Additional phases of the Green Line Transformation Program will focus on a strategic vision and KPIs for Green Line service and infrastructure for 2019 and beyond.