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MBTA hopes to reduce Blue Line ridership by decreasing fares to ride commuter rail from Lynn

The MBTA announced that starting tomorrow and through May 31, riders can get between Lynn and North Station for the same price as a subway fare: $2.40 a ride.

In an effort to provide additional social distancing measures as well as ease crowding onboard both area bus routes and the Blue Line, this temporary Zone 1A fare provides another travel option for riders that typically transfer to the Blue Line at Wonderland Station and additional North Shore customers affected by the temporary Blue Line shutdown who travel to and from Downtown Boston. This fare effort also allows the MBTA the opportunity to collect ridership data related to the effects of temporary fare changes on relieving crowding on bus routes and the Blue Line.

Riders who already have a CharlieCard or CharlieTicket can flash those at conductors, who will also continue to take monthly passes and mTickets.

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as the Blue Line itself is shut down between Airport and Bowdoin for construction until the end of May.

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Changes that should happened anyway and shouldn't take a Pandemic.

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You were promised a Blue Line extension to Lynn in the mid 20th century.

You got a patronage empire for every third cousin of the past six Speakers of the House.

You will get another couple of federal indictments before the Blue Line is finally extended to Lynn a few trillion dollars over budget just days before safe, cheap, widely available teleportation makes public transit obsolete in the 24th century.

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Let’s decrease density on one train by wildly inflating it on another. Why raise the roof when you can lower the floor? Lynners have been begging for this for decades, now they get to pretend it’s about the current crisis. BUT, it’s still a better idea than spending billions to extend the BL.

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Still waiting for that Zone 1A fare to benefit the rest of the city folk. It costs $214/month to ride those extra 4 minutes from Forest Hills to Roslindale Square. It should be $90/month, the same price they pay from Lynn or Fairmount.

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The T just changed its fare structure today, such that you can pay with CharlieCard on the Fairmount Line and get a free transfer to any local bus or the subway at South Station. All for the low price of $2.40, or $1.10 if you're a senior or low-income person between 18-25.

Imagine that: a fast, traffic-free, 2-seat ride from Roslindale, West Roxbury, or Hyde Park to Cambridge (hypothetical) for $2.40 instead of today's $8.90 (CR+Red). Instead, for the foreseeable future, countless numbers of people will continue to be stuck on the 32 or one of the 11 bus routes on Washington Street, while their better-paid peers zoom past them on literally parallel tracks.

Ideally, we should be extending the Orange Line in the next 10 years (the SW Corridor is running out of room for Needham trains because of Amtrak NEC capacity expansion and South Coast Rail). Yet, here we are as a society that embraces class segregation: denying better transit -- transit that already exists -- by imposing hefty cost barrier. Even worse, it's also a barrier that won't go away even with means-tested reduced fares for poor people: CR will still be 2.5x more expensive even if every fare is halved.

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Also, have you ever been to Lynn? Let's just say that West Roxbury is to say the least slightly richer than Lynn.

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Are not so rich. There's lots of public and private housing between Washington St and the NEC tracks, home to many "essential workers" (aka the working class).

Also, just look at the pre-Covid crowding on the 32. If those people could reasonably pay $214/month, I'm sure they would have switched to CR a long time ago...

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The crowd living in the higher income sections of West Roxbury and Roslindale have been fighting for this for years. They only started including Hyde Park recently, almost as a throw in. Yes, the argument could be made that Hyde Park station may have a similar economic situation as Lynn, but let's be frank, the people living in Archdale and Fawndale (which is private, subsidized housing) won't be the ones benefiting from any reduction on fares on the Needham Line.

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And that part sounds kinda weird. Not only does the conductor have no ability to take any money off your stored-value Charlie Card, he/she has no way of knowing if you have any money on it at all.

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No fares being collected to/from Lynn. They were (maybe still are?) also doing this to/from Chelsea to alleviate the impacts of the Tobin Bridge work.

Nonetheless, it's reasonable because the "free" service ends as soon as the Blue Line gets back up and running.

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The goal is to let people ride with monthly subway passes. That means anyone who has a CharlieCard gets to ride free, since there's no way for a conductor to see what's on the card.

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They are already not collecting bus fares so this is just more of the same.

On the Fairmount branch they have machines that will allow you to debit a Charlie Card and get a paper pass to hand to the conductor. This is also a pilot program.

Once their new fare system is in place in a couple of years it will be unified -- -- assuming that ever happens of course.

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I doubt they can collect any statistically valid data based on depressed passenger counts for a program which lasts five business days, announced with almost zero notice. It sounds more like they woefully underestimated the need for shuttle buses (especially if social distancing is expected) and are scrambling to avoid the optics of buses packed with brown people.

I don't entirely understand charging $7 each way/$232 monthly for the train vs $2.40/$90 monthly to change from the Blue Line to a bus at Wonderland. Sure, the train is faster but the schedule is less frequent, especially at off hours.

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The MBTA Twitter feeds have been remarkably quiet this past week; very few comments on the shuttles. If there is actually crowding, I'm sure someone would have said something by now - many vocal activists and politicians out there!

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