Neighbors to MBTA: Fix Arborway Yard - Metro US

Neighbors to MBTA: Fix Arborway Yard

Hundreds of Jamaica Plain residents are petitioning the MBTA to fund an environmentally friendly bus yard, known as the Arborway Yard, after nearly 13 years of planning.

The T recently reneged on its commitment to improve the yard on Washington Street near Forest Hills, a project that would convert eight acres of the property into affordable housing, small businesses and green space.

After investing $30 million in the shovel-ready project, the T didn’t include final funding for the $220 million project in its current capital budget.

“You’d almost create a new community with green space, shopping stores and a lot of land, so it is a linchpin for the neighborhood,” said Henry Allen, who chairs the Community Planning Committee for the Arborway Yard. “It’s the perfect example of transit-oriented development. You couldn’t have a more perfect example in an urban area.

“There’s probably no other place in Boston that has the opportunity to do a transit-oriented urban development and open space.”

Allen’s group hopes to collect 500 signatures, but the T says it can’t fund the project without an additional source of funding due to its $2.7 billion repair backlog.

“When additional funding is available, these projects will be prime candidates for inclusion into a future MBTA capital investment plan,” T General Manager Rich Davey said.

Allen said the project originally cost about $85 million.

“We’re saying they should be able to find a way to include $220 million out of that $6 billion program,” Allen said.

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