March 28, 2023

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MBTA said it is considering closing the orange line for 30 days for maintenance

MBTA said it is considering closing the orange line for 30 days for maintenance

The MBTA is actively considering closing the Orange Line for 30 days starting later this month, according to people familiar with the plan.

According to sources, the shutdown, which will extend through September, will allow T to perform a long-awaited maintenance. It could also mean disturbing the hundreds of thousands of people who rely on the Orange Line.

The MBTA Board scheduled a last-minute meeting on Wednesday morning to review the contract with A. Yankee Line Corporation, a The company that often provides shuttle bus service when the MBTA closes parts of its subway lines.

The MBTA is awaiting a final safety investigation report from the Federal Transit Administration, which began its inspection of the T subway system in mid-April after a long string of safety incidents, including the death of a Red Line passenger.

In June, it was The FTA said it found that the MBTA Necessary to repair and modernize large areas of subway tracks.

The FTA found that about 10 percent of MBTA’s subway tracks are subject to speed restrictions due to faults, including a years-slow zone on Orange Line tracks between Tufts Medical Center and Back Bay stations. The FTA said track maintenance crews use a two-hour window to complete repairs overnight, not nearly enough time.

The MBTA has already made progress in fixing a portion of the faulty orange line tracks that have been in the sluggish zone for so many years.

Daily flights on the Orange Line as of October 2021 averaged 104,000, according to an MBTA presentation earlier this year. By comparison, the average number of daily trips on the Blue Line was 41,000, the Green Line 94,000, and the Red Line 125,000.

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In response to FTA directives that T did not have enough dispatchers to safely operate the subway, the agency cut service on the orange, blue and red lines by more than 20% in June.

Among the recent safety incidents on the T: An Orange Line train caught fire causing passengers to flee after a plate fell from the vehicle and came into contact with the electric third rail.

This is a breaking news story that will be updated.

Taylor Dolven can be reached at [email protected] Follow her on Twitter Tweet embed.