Beginning on Monday, passengers who use the Worcester/Framingham commuter rail line can look forward to a new and improved experience that includes upgrades to a historic Boston rail station and more than double the service stops on the 44-mile line.
Gov. Deval Patrick will attend a ceremony to mark the opening of the Yawkey Commuter Rail Station in Boston, which recently completed a $13.5 million renovation to prepare for the increased rail service.
The new rail schedule that goes into effect today increases inbound departures from Worcester to Boston from 17 to 20 trains per day, with outbound departures from Boston to Worcester rising from 16 to 20 trains per day.
Crews began workon the Yawkey upgrade in November 2010; improvements were originally expected to wrap up by spring 2012.
“The opening of Yawkey Station is the culmination of many years of cooperation and partnership to increase access to accessible, convenient and efficient public transportation between Worcester and Fenway,” Patrick said in a prepared statement.
“This project shows that our growth strategy is real, not rhetorical. We must use public investment – of time, money and ideas – to stimulate growth and build opportunity for our residents,” he said.
The station is now equipped with two fully accessible, full-length train platforms, four new elevators and an accessibility ramp. The main entrance is now on the new Yawkey Way Extension, which provides vehicular and pedestrian access off Brookline Avenue through an area that had been used for Red Sox parking.
Passengers can also expect new access to Maitland and Beacon streets, as well as a bike share station and new waiting areas with canopies and windscreens.
During construction, the tracks at Yawkey Commuter Rail Station were realigned to allow for double-track capacity, serving as the catalyst for expanded commuter line service.
MassDOT Secretary and CEO Richard Davey said the increased service between the two major cities shows the agency’s continued encouragement of economic growth in and around the region.
“The Framingham/Worcester Line serves 13,000 customers daily and continues to demonstrate consistent growth, and MassDOT is confident that with this expansion, we will see that number climb,” said Davey.
More details on the increased schedule:
- The increased service will also offer three new off-peak trains, including a new departure at 11 p.m. for those leaving the area later in the evening.
- There will also be an increase from two to three trains leaving Boston, scheduled to arrive in Worcester before 8:30 a.m.
- Likewise, there will be an increase in service during peak times, with a new train departing from South Station at 6:40 p.m., stopping at Yawkey and ending in Worcester.
- An additional new outbound train will depart South Station at 9:25 p.m. before stopping at Yawkey. The 9:25 p.m. train will shorten the previous nearly two-hour evening gap to one hour.
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