Today was a great morning for riders of the MBTA's Blue Line subway line. The T replaced the Blue Line's 4-car trains with 6-car trains. Read all about it in this article from today's The Boston Herald. Over the next few months, all the Blue Line's trains will be running with 6-cars with 84 cars operating during rush hour by early 2008.
In other news, The Boston Globe reported that Governor Deval Patrick and his administration will unveil a bailout plan for the Mass Pike and MBTA. Eight cost-saving measures are outlined in the proposal, which requires outside approval. The $13 million cost-sharing program includes changing who actually inspects the bridges and who pays to maintain roads and T stations.
The biggest proposal would shift responsibility to inspect almost all the state's bridges to MassHighway, saving the MBTA $3.5 million in its annual budget and the Turnpike Authority $2.5 million. MassHighway would also cover about $1.2 million in costs for hiring flaggers at bridge construction projects over MBTA tracks.
The plan also calls on Massport to cover the $3.7 million in annual maintenance for the tunnel that connects Interstate 93 and the Tobin Bridge in Charlestown. Massport would also pick up more costs for portions of the Silver Line and Blue Line that bring travelers to Logan, relieving the MBTA of about $1.6 million in expenses.