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MBTA mulling more scenarios to close budget gap

What would be worse for MBTA riders? Steep fare increases, or drastic service cuts?

According to State House News, feedback shows that riders would rather pay more to ride the T than lose hundreds of buses and weekend trains, as proposed by the MBTA in order to close their budget gap.

Currently, the T is considering either spiking fares significantly while cutting some services, or raising the cost to ride the T slightly and axing hundreds of bus routes.

But now, MassDOT Secretary Rich Davey is saying there might be other options than the two proposed scenarios the T has put on the table for customers to digest.

According to State House News, Davey said he’s weighing several proposals to “more creatively” structure T fares, including three or four ideas he heard from members of the public at the T’s hearings.

Asked whether he’s warmed to the idea of implementing a system of higher fares during the T’s busiest commuting hours, Davey said, “I think the answer is yes.” He said he’s also interested in a proposal presented by one customer to establish peak and off-peak fares for elderly riders, according to the report.

“The chorus I’m hearing is, ‘I would rather pay more but not cut the service,’” Davey told the News Service on Thursday at the State House.