Mock MassDOT statement shows what closed highways would do to commuters

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We need to start by saying, the following letter is not real. It is made up.

But just use your imagination and think about the context for a minute, especially if you frequently ride the T.

Following recent announcements made by MBTA officials about proposals to slash weekend Commuter Rail trains, and knock out service after 10 p.m., a user on Pastebin.com, a site where you can post messages and store text and source codes, made a hypothetical statement in the voice of a faux-MassDOT employee.

The letter shows what it would be like if MassDOT were to keep drivers off the roads on the weekends and after 10 p.m. in order to save money, much like the MBTA has suggested for some train services in order to close its $161 million budget gap.

The letter basically shows that people all over the Commonwealth rely on transportation, much like drivers rely on the highways to get around.

Again, this is NOT a real letter, but a mock proposal posted online and then tweeted by @OccupyMBTA.

Can you imagine if this happened? Enjoy the read!

“FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — Massachusetts Department of Transportation — January 25, 2012 — Boston, MA –
    In an unprecedented show of solidarity with MBTA commuters, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) has announced the closure of the Massachusetts Turnpike (Masspike) between the hours of 10:00 PM and 6:00 AM weekdays, and all day on weekends, effective July 1, 2012.
    MassDOT spokesperson Anita LaBotomie announced in a brief statement to the press early Wednesday morning “why should only MBTA commuters, and specifically bus and MBCR [Commuter Rail] commuters field the burden of the massive debt incurred due to gross mismanagement and cost overruns on the Central Artery Project [Big Dig]? This is patently unfair and discriminates against those who choose mass transit; particularly those who choose it because it is the only transportation mode they can choose. I am certain automobile commuters will gladly share the burden since that is what a Commonwealth is all about. We’ve run the numbers, and the cost savings will be substantial.” When asked if alternative transportation modes are available to Masspike commuters, Ms. LaBotomie replied “absolutely. Just as with MBTA boat commuters, there are alternatives. We will be keeping the Masspike open for pedestrian traffic when the road is closed to motor vehicles. People commuting to Logan Airport should allow for extra time.” LaBotomie also expressed sympathy for those who would be unable to commute to and from work on nights and weekends – “we feel your pain. You’ll need to move.”


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