Downtown Green and Orange line service is back, says T
Engineers and safety experts have determined that it is safe for Orange and Green Line trains to travel through the tunnels under the Government Center garage.
In a press release on Sunday evening, the MBTA said the trains were back on after a service stoppage on Thursday evening due to “severely deteriorated” support columns connected to the garage, which sits atop the tunnels that carry the lines green and orange.
The discovery led to shuttles replacing Green Line trains between Lechmere and Government Center. Orange Line service closed between Back Bay and North Station.
Repairs to the garage passed inspection, the T said on Sunday.
T’s general manager Steve Poftak blamed the disruption on the construction company overseeing the demolition of the garage, calling the situation “unacceptable”. The company said the infrastructure was compromised by water damage, not demolition work.
Government Center Garage is giving way to a private development – and last week was not the first time the project affected Service T. A partial collapse at the site in March killed a construction worker and suspended the service of the green and orange lines until the engineers can give the green light to the subway tunnels.
On Sunday, North East student Ellisar Hamdan took a break as she transferred to Government Center shuttles. She said she tried not to think about the structural stability of the garage as she drove to work in Somerville on the Green Line.
“Honestly, I feel like if I thought about it, I’d probably freak out,” she said.
Avery Garrison of Jamaica Plain stood nearby. He said he was considering walking a mile and a half to Copley rather than making another change between the shuttle and the train.
“It’s a beautiful day, so I’m going to challenge myself and take this walk,” he said.
This latest service outage added to weekday service cuts already in effect on the Orange, Red and Blue lines, as the MBTA tackles a shortage of subway dispatchers. The issue was one of several reported by Federal Transit Administration safety inspectors earlier this month.
Meanwhile, passengers navigate a service stop on Branch B of the Green Line which is due to end on July 1.
Speaking about the myriad of service issues and how they affect her journey to work at Boston College, East Boston resident Jina Lee said she felt there was only one logical explanation for the current state of the MBTA.
“It’s cursed,” she said. “Maybe that’s the right word – it’s cursed.”
In a statement about downtown service changes last week, the T said the safety of passengers and employees was its top priority.