The following is a media release from Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s office. She is one of two individuals elected by voters in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to serve the state in Washington DC in the US Senate. She is a Democrat.
BOSTON – United States Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Edward J. Markey (D-MA), along with Representatives James P. McGovern (D-MA-02), Stephen F. Lynch (D-MA-08), William Keating (D-MA-09), Joseph P. Kennedy III (D-MA-04), Katherine Clark (D-MA-05), Seth Moulton (D-MA-06), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA-07) and Lori Trahan (D-MA-03), this week, announced that the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) will receive over $41 million in competitive grant funding through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Federal-State Partnership for State of Good Repair Grant program.
MassDOT will utilize this federal grant to replace and upgrade signals, switches, track, power systems, and related infrastructure at South Station’s Tower 1, a junction for trains arriving and departing South Station.
In March, the lawmakers expressed support for MassDOT’s grant application in a letter to the Federal Railroad Administration.
“This federal investment to modernize South Station’s rail infrastructure is wonderful news for Massachusetts residents, visitors, commuters, and workers, and will spur economic activity across the entire region,” said Senator Warren. “Securing federal funding for our public transit system has been a top priority of mine since I first came to Washington, and I’m glad to have partnered with my colleagues to help deliver for this critical project.”
“South Station is an essential hub for transportation in Massachusetts and along the North East Corridor,” said Senator Markey. “With this grant, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation can begin to make critical improvements to South Station that will enhance the reliability and efficiency of travel for passengers on both Amtrak and the MBTA. The federal investment will benefit Boston, surrounding communities, and the North East region as a whole. I am proud to have worked with my colleagues in the Massachusetts congressional delegation to secure this new funding.”
“South Station plays a pivotal role in our region’s economic growth, and this grant will bring new opportunity not just to Boston, but to our entire Commonwealth,” said Congressman Jim McGovern. “This is a great example of the type of investments that America should be making in our infrastructure in order to stay competitive, and I’m proud of our delegation’s partnership with state and federal agencies to help bring this funding to Massachusetts.”
“As Boston continues to grow, it is imperative we update our essential infrastructure to ensure the safety and efficiency of all public transportation,” said Congressman Lynch. “South Station services over 75,000 passengers daily on the MBTA and Commuter Rail and this critical grant will allow the hub to make necessary improvements that will benefit the entire New England region.”
“Smart investments in our aging infrastructure are critical to the economic success of our region,” said Congressman Keating. “Not only is South Station a hub for the greater New England region, it is pivotal to commuters from the Southeastern area of Massachusetts. This grant is also an example of the strong partnership between our federal and local officials and I am proud to have worked with my colleagues in the delegation to secure it.”
“Investing in South Station isn’t just about modernizing our Commonwealth’s outdated infrastructure and public transportation, it’s about making good on a promise of regional equity that we too often fail to live up to,” said Congressman Kennedy. “With projects like South Coast Rail moving forward in the years ahead, this grant funding and the South Station Tower will strengthen economies throughout the region for generations to come.”
“Investing in our public transportation system is central to improving the quality of life for Massachusetts residents as well as tackling climate change,” said Congresswoman Clark. “With the support of this $41 million grant, we will be able to make significant updates to South Station and its connected transportation arteries, helping us to advance both of these goals. As a member of the Appropriations Committee, fully funding this grant has been a priority of mine and I’m thrilled that Massachusetts families and businesses will directly benefit from these resources.”
“Congress must step up to make it easier for commuters to get to work, and these investments are a solid step forward. But, I hope it’s just the start. There’s a lot more work to do for North Shore commuters,” Congressman Moulton said. “I hope these funds lead to more reliability throughout the entire transit system. Let’s keep pushing our commuter rail system forward, and think even bigger than this–let’s build a North South Rail Link.”
“When we adequately invest in transit reliability, we more equitably distribute prosperity and reduce inequality,” said Congresswoman Pressley. “As the 4th busiest station in Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor, Boston’s South Terminal Station is an essential part of connecting people to opportunities throughout the country. This grant will ensure its functionality – benefiting workers, reducing congestion, and helping our environment.”
“With increasing congestion and traffic on our roadways, it’s imperative that we invest in our public transportation systems, especially our railways and stations. These critical upgrades and improvements at South Station will create greater flexibility and reliability in train service which will hopefully entice more people to leave their cars at home. These types of commuting options are not only better for our environment, but they are key to a stronger economy and a happier quality of life of those who live and work here,” said Congresswoman Trahan.
Boston’s South Station Terminal, the sixth busiest station in the national Amtrak system and the fourth busiest station on the North East Corridor, is now suffering from deficiencies that hamper its current and future operations due to geographic constraints, increased service demands, and outdated equipment. The Tower 1 project would replace the existing signal system, address settling that has occurred at switch points, and improve resilience.
More information about the DOT’s State of Good Repair program is available here.