by Aug 17, 2023 | News | 7 comments
Signs of decay in the Central Square T stop in Cambridge on March 8. (Photo: Marc Levy)
The MBTA released a plan Thursday for improvements to elevators and escalators at its Central Square station on the red line in Cambridge, with several other upgrades packaged around them.
“Central Square Station is one of Cambridge’s busiest subway stations” and yet doesn’t meet current accessibility requirements, the T noted in an email alert. “This project will provide elevators and other improvements for rider accessibility needs.”
Construction on the $35 million project is expected to start in the spring and end in mid-2026, the T said. The project adds two new elevators – one on each of the inbound and outbound platform – as well as replaces the existing elevator on the outbound platform. The station will end with four elevators, according to MBTA schematics.
The agency also will update the existing inbound escalator, upgrade the public restroom and build an accessible fire- and smoke-proof area on each platform for riders awaiting rescue and evacuation during crises.
Interior lighting will be replaced, the station will be cleaned and painted throughout, and there will be improvements to wayfinding signs, fare collection, and power and communication systems, the T said.
About time, Central Station has been neglected for decades!
I applaud the addition and upgrade of elevators. Central square is sorely lacking quality public restrooms.
Good to know we’ll be getting more public urinals in Central Square. Anyone remember the fiasco of the multi-year delays with the “new” inbound elevator (3-4 years?) in front of what used to be the Dunkin Donuts [before that mess was finally shut down because it had been allowed to become such a total shit show] that was only finally completed just a few years ago? Personally, I’d rather see a restoration of service on bus routes in Cambridge than have the idiots who run the MBTA wasting even more of our money to build FOUR elevators in Central Square, when – if properly maintained and policed – TWO should ordinarily be sufficient. This is pure idiocy.
“the MBTA wasting even more of our money to build FOUR elevators in Central Square, when – if properly maintained and policed – TWO should ordinarily be sufficient.”
Again I am glad you aren’t on the ballot. You are ignorant of the relevant issues and always respond with reactionary and austerity minded opposition to livability improvements.
‘Redundant’ elevators are mandated by the The Daniels-Finegold Settlement Agreement because an elevator going out of service does not render a station inaccessible. It is not wasteful to ensure disabled people can maintain access to public transit. I for one am actually glad the T is way ahead of most of its comparably old systems in accessibility and hope it continues to make improvements until the system is fully accessible.
Better public bathrooms is also great news.
Not exactly. [From the 2013 Joint Assessment of “progress” on the 2006 Daniels-Finegold Settlement:] “The MBTA has maintained a standard of reliable elevator operation at over 99% for several years. Still, if a robust replacement plan is not enacted, it is only a matter of time before the elevator reliability rates begin to drop. To avoid such an outcome, the MBTA has initiated development of a dual-track comprehensive plan that schedules installation of redundant elevators, as well as repairs and replacement of existing units to avoid large-scale accessibility issues. In cooperation with the plaintiffs and with MBTA/MassDOT Board of Directors’ approval, the plan will provide for a steady budgetary outlay for the next five to ten years.” In other words, “redundant” elevators might well not be needed were T maintenance (and replacement rates) what they should be.
As I mentioned, the existing elevators are, in fact, little more than stinky public urinals. This, despite a public toilet having been installed recently just a half a block away that cost well over the originally budgeted $350,000 that was the product of a Cambridge “participatory budget” process.
Bono suspects that those with disabilities who are forced to take the T appreciate elevators that don’t stink, just like the rest of us.
Bono first presented photos and showed T Operations staff the condition of the Central Square Station and, in particular, the ceiling above the inbound platform pictured in the article, in person, about a decade ago.
“Slaw” likes to hide behind a cloak of anonymity, but he can’t seem to hide his complete ignorance.
Oh, and, by the way, “Slaw,” for the record, how often do you actually ride the T?? You seem like somebody who likes to “virtue signal” about things about which you have very little or no actual direct experience. What bus routes do you use regularly? How often do you frequent the Central Square T Station? How often do you take the elevators there? (Do you pay taxes? [Oh, never mind…])
“In other words, “redundant” elevators might well not be needed were T maintenance (and replacement rates) what they should be.”That is explicitly not what you quoted said, and subsequent policies and agreements with the disabled community have only expanded the mandate for redundant elevators.
“reliable elevator operation at over 99%” That actually isn’t as good as it sounds because in that 1% of times the elevators are down would average to 3.5 days per station per year (and of course that is worse at certain stations than others, worst at the most used stations) that the station is completely inaccessible to someone who cannot use stairs. This is part of why the ruling was made and you seem to be claiming it says the opposite of what it actually does.
As someone with a disability, although not one that impacts my use of stairs, I am glad you will be nowhere near public office in this city. You clearly read about the ruling only long enough and deep enough to pull something out of context in order to make your point that undermines the actual intent of it and all subsequent policy on this. Why are you like this? Disabled people in this city deserve better.
“As I mentioned, the existing elevators are, in fact, little more than stinky public urinals.” This is all the more reason to expand bathrooms AND add redundant elevators because pee is extremely damaging to elevator function and if the existing elevators are unreliable because of urine redundant elevators should if anything help with that. At very least if one goes down because of urine there is a second to use.
Also while there are some public bathrooms nearby the existing one in the station has been locked every single time I have needed it in recent years. People may not know there is one nearby above ground if they are in the station, there certainly isn’t any signage indicating that. In that context I am not at all surprised people are using the elevators in its place at one of the busiest stations on the system.
“This, despite a public toilet having been installed recently just a half a block away that cost well over the originally budgeted $350,000 that was the product of a Cambridge “participatory budget” process.” Again all you offer is austerity politics, incoherently using one improvement of the public realm to argue against further improvements.
“Bono suspects that those with disabilities who are forced to take the T appreciate elevators that don’t stink, just like the rest of us.” Of course they do, but how does you arguing against the redundant elevators they need actually help that? It clearly doesn’t and if anything does the opposite. You appear to be trying to tokenize people after it is pointed out that you left them out of all consideration in the first place.
““Slaw” likes to hide behind a cloak of anonymity, but he can’t seem to hide his complete ignorance.” This is a comment section, anonymity isn’t hiding anything. You also are going by a pseudonym in this conversation, in case you forgot. But it is clear you like to project your behavior onto others in that regard, in in your proclaiming my ignorance while demonstrating your own, and previously in throwing out insults repeatedly while claiming substantive disagreement with your ideas was a personal attack.
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by Aug 17, 2023 | News | 7 comments