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30-day Orange Line shutdown: MBTA riders have questions

BOSTON — With the Orange Line shutdown a few days away, Copley Square was riddled with signs warning drivers not to park there Sunday night.

That’s because the Boston Transportation Department began painting the lines and painting bus-only signs. The roadway markings were in preparation for the MBTA shutting down the Orange Line and a part of the Green Line for a month for what it calls safety repair work.

“Fixing the T how? I’ve been taking the T since I was a child and I think it’s kind of odd,” said Monete Pow of Dorchester. “They could’ve fixed the T when we had a pandemic, but that’s just me.”

That’s just one of the questions viewers had with the city’s request to have more people on buses and bikes.

“I haven’t ridden a bike and almost 25 years. I can’t ride a bike,” said Jack Goodwin who lives nearby. “They call it rush hour, it’s going to be slow hour. Why didn’t they figure this out when they got the new trains in? Every line doesn’t have new trains.”

The questions formed as riders tried to figure out how they will make this work.

“Why couldn’t they just do it on the weekends like they do every other line? The Red Line is giving us the most problems but they’re shutting down the Orange Line 1st. I just don’t understand it,” said Wayne Fleury of Dorchester.

It’s not just those riding the train with questions, drivers who saw the extra tow trucks around asked us why their spots are disappearing.

“There is no type of parking around this joint,” said NH resident Kevin Baker. “They need to open up more parking so people can get parking instead of getting towed. They are trying to tax.”

One of the questions we heard the most was, how the T will compensate people for the headaches.

“I think transportation should be free for the rest of the year for this inconvenience,” said Pow. “It might sound like a stretch but it’s not. People have to come off the commuter rail and then take another train which is ridiculous. Something has to give.”

We asked every single one of those questions to the MBTA. The answer we got was to come to the press conference Monday at 11 am at the State Transportation Building. Governor Baker, MBTA officials, and MassDOT will all be there.

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