Needham Line Service Cut Postponed to July 7
The local Commuter Rail trains will continue operating through the weekend to accommodate visitors during the Tall Ship and Fourth events.
The Commuter Rail's Needham Line will continue to operate through the upcoming holiday weekend, as plans to eliminate weekend service have been postponed until July 7.
The Saturday service cut was part of the final plan approved by the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority in April in an effort to close a projected $161 million deficit in the 2013 fiscal year. The plan called for other cuts on various Commuter Rail and bus lines and an across-the-board fare increase. The changes were set to take place on July 1 with the start of the new fiscal year.
While the fare increases are set to begin as scheduled, weekend service on Needham and other lines will not be eliminated until one week later.
"A normal Sunday service will operate on Sunday July 1, and a Saturday service will operate for July 4, with the last train departing at 11:45 p.m., so revelers can enjoy the fireworks," the MBTA said in a press release. "The schedule change reflects an effort to accommodate the high ridership that is expected in conjunction with Operation Sail and Tall Ship Events and the July 4 celebration."
The Needham Line already does not operate on Sunday; that will not change. The Saturday schedule will continue one more weekend before being eliminated.
The Needham bus line, Bus 59, will continue to operate as usual and was not affected by the cuts.
Fare increases will be as follows:
• A one-way ride on the Commuter Rail’s Needham Line will go up by $1.25, from $4.75 to $6
• Local bus fares will increase from $1.25 per ride to $1.50 per ride.
• Prices will go up for student and senior riders. Adults age 65 and over who now pay just 40 cents for a bus ride will pay 75 cents per ride under the new plan. Subway rides will go up from 60 cents to $1 for seniors.
• Student bus fares will increase from 60 cents to 75 cents, while subway rides will increase from $85 cents to $1 under the new plan.
Planning to drive into the city for these upcoming events? City and state agencies recently released a parking advisory for the extended July 4 celebration.