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Non-shocker: New Orange, Red Line cars now way behind schedule

Brian Kane reports that CRRC is now 12 to 15 months behind schedule in churning them out at its Springfield assembly plant. The Boston Business Journal reports that means Orange Line riders could continue to see their superannuated cars until April, 2023, 15 months after originally planned, while the last of the wizened Red Line cars could still be in service until September, 2024, 12 months later than expected.

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Are there no guarantees in the contract?? I work with vendors, and we have performance guarantee aspects in those contracts, which are valued at way, way less than these ones.

So frustrating that so few MBTA projects can be completed anywhere near on schedule.




Under the contract, the agency can fine the company $500 per day per car for the delays. It plans to assess fines at the end of the contract, Gonneville said, after it determines which delays were CRRC’s responsibility.

From the linked BBJ.


12-15 months behind schedule? Big deal. That’s like half of how long we were behind schedule on the Casey Arborway project!


which went way the hell over budget, as well as going behind schedule!


With the news careening out of control every day to the point where every check of the headlines feels like arriving on a different planet, it's good to know there are some things - the absolute ineptitude of the MBTA high among them - more predictable and unchanging as the tides.


That comes as no surprise, whatsoever. Given the constant ineptness of the MBTA and the way it's run, and technology, the delays and the fact that the new MBTA cars are way the hell off schedule is not the least bit shocking.


Perhaps a certain industrial firm is to blame for this.


Yea this is a private company who is building the train cars though.

our public transportation issues remain unchanged.

That's partly because a lot of people (myself included) are reluctant to use the MBTA, especially during the Covid-19 Pandemic, because there are so many people on those trains who refuse to wear masks and social distance from each other. If the people who ran the MBTA, and Governor Baker were a bit more thoughtful, they'd severely limit the number of people who could ride the MBTA at one time, and mandate mask wearing and social distancing, on the part of MBTA passengers and MBTA staffpeople alike.


masks/social distancing/ridership and car upgrades/on time delivery is what, exactly?


you probably remember how, during both the morning and late-afternoon/evening rush-hours, people were packed into the MBTA subway train cars, and even on MBTA buses like sardines, with no room to social distance, and this was before the Covid-19 pandemic.

Even now, passengers on the MBTA subway trains, as well as lots of MBTA workers are refusing to wear masks and to social distance, and the fact that the MBTA staff people refuse to limit how many people can ride in MBTA subway train cars at one time, are reluctant to ride the subway trains for those reasons. Given those conditions, it's not surprising that a lot of people refuse to ride the MBTA subway trains or buses.

The fact that the new MBTA subway train cars for both the Red Line and the Orange Line are being delivered late, is not surprising, because all too often, building stuff like that takes way longer to build than was originally predicted.

When’s the last time you were on the T?


I'd say nearly everyone wears masks on trains and I rode the MBTA all through the pandemic (peak-now)...it's silly how so many of you who haven't set foot in a station are speculating with "nobody wears masks on there!" while screaming for another shutdown *facepalm*

You are commenting on something that you have no real world experience of.

I've commented on articles about South Boston, but I refrain from discussing what is actually happening on the beaches because I haven't been in Southie for a year.

The T by and large is in good shape. People are wearing masks. It's no different than going to the grocery store. I've been on the Orange Line during "rush hour" recently and it is not a bad situation.

I've been taking the Orange Line in and out of downtown once a week since April, almost every time all riders are wearing masks.

You are absolutely dead wrong here, Waquiot! I rode the MBTA plenty of times, for a great many years; going to school, evening classes, doing necessary errands downtown, and even going to medical appointments in Boston, and out to concerts and movies, especially in the winter when the weather was bad,

I've lived in Somerville for the past 32 years, and I lived in Boston proper, Brookline and Cambridge before I moved into my present Somerville condo, which I'm a proud owner of, and I have used the MBTA plenty. So don't go assuming that I have not had any experience on the T. Before the pandemic, when I rode the MBTA at rush hour, people really were packed into those cars like sardines, and it was virtually impossible to get off at one's necessary stop, at times.

I'll also add, that, if not for the Pandemic, I'd still be using the MBTA, so don't get feeling too snotty, or virtuous. Thanks.

And that was my point. It's not the horror show you think it is. It's no worse than going shopping. And if you are avoiding shopping, then yes, the T is not for you, but going out in general is probably not on the horizon in a case like that.

I have not wanted to ride the MBTA during the pandemic, nor do I wis to ride the Lyft, either, but I'll have no choice but to take the Lyft there and back, since I'm having a thorough yearly eye-dilation examination next month.

I'll also add, however, that since I'm a woman who's over 65, despite my being healthy and physically active (I walk and do TKD.), I'm in a high-risk group for Covid-19, due to my age range.

If you aren't going to ride the T regardless, why are you griping about it?

If you have ridden the T since March and saw overcrowding on your rides, you'd have a point, but again, since I've been riding uncrowded trains full of people wearing masks, I'd say that perhaps one of us has a slightly better perspective.

When the Orange Line cars were built, Jimmy Carter was President. The Oldsmobile Cutlass was the best-selling car. PanAm, TWA, and Eastern were flying planes out of Logan. 36 year old Joe Biden was beginning his second term as Senator from Delaware. All 4 Beatles were still alive. Mae West was still alive. And those brand new subway cars would ride on the elevated tracks through Dudley Station for the next 8 years.


So what? Plenty of transit systems and railroads run cars built before 1979. The problem is poor quality steel which is rusting away to nothing.

So what? Plenty of transit systems and railroads run much older cars. The problem is the Orange Line trains were made with substandard steel that is rusting away to nothing.

Due to contractor production obstacles including materials availability, workflow, employee levels, and the ongoing impacts of COVID-19, we must unfortunately announce a significant, 12+ month delay in delivery of the new Red Line and Orange Line fleets.
We share in the disappointment of our riders, and are working diligently to bring these vehicles into service alongside the 3 new Orange Line trains. Our senior leadership continues to actively monitor & provide guidance to lessen the delay.

for the inconvenience."

I believe the management is monitoring and providing guidance but all that means IRL is that they are seeing deadlines get missed and sending emails about how it would be good to have the trains sooner.

By and large, manufacturing facilities are back to where they were pre-shutdown. Ergo, the delay should be 4-5 months, not 12+. This is incompetence hiding behind covid-19.

There's manufacturing and there's manufacturing. Just because some types of factories are back at full steam doesn't mean something as complicated and specialized as a custom order of railcars, with different parts of the process occurring on different continents, can get running on the same schedule.

this should have rhymed but you'll get no help from me

I'm not looking forward to the new cars. Painfully bright lighting, uncomfortable seats, endless nag announcements and beeping. And while the existing Orange Line trains feel like they're about to fall to pieces, the Red Line trains seem fine to me, especially the newer ones.