Boston, MA– If you've ever driven on the Mass Pike during a normal commute hour, you, like me, know it can be hellish. It is one of the more congested roadways in the state, with many trying to get home from working in downtown Boston. But, this summer, we will have to endure even worse circumstances.
The Boston Globe is reporting that the Prudential tunnel is set to be expanded to go under parts of Massachusetts Avenue and Boylston Street. The project will take an estimated 16 months, during which time different parts of the highway will be shut down.
Perhaps the worst part is this entire project is happening in order to "make way for an air-rights real estate development."
The Globe points out that in order for this not to be a nightmare, significant planning ought to take place. They mention different ideas such as temporary ramps to exit the turnpike at strategic locations, and expanding the service of the "Worcester commuter line to encourage drivers to avoid using the turnpike during this extended construction period."
Even more daunting, this isn't the only project in the near future which will cause major delays on the turnpike: "Not too long after the Prudential tunnel work is completed, the $1.1 billion 10-year Allston Multimodal Project will begin, which involves the demolition of the Boston University viaduct. The proposed lane closures and speed reductions for drivers, and track closures and speed reductions on the commuter rail, amount to colossal commuter disruption."
At least the Multimodal Project is within the best interests of the neighborhood. According to the official website, "The project creates an opportunity to dramatically improve livability and connectivity for residents of the Allston neighborhood while preserving and enhancing regional mobility through improvements to I-90 and its abutting interchange and the creation of a new stop on the Worcester/Framingham Commuter Line to be known as West Station."
Well, the truth is you probably don't live in the Boston area because of our state of the art transportation system or our effortless driving commutes. Get ready for some more classic Boston traffic.
Image via Wikimedia Commons / Derek Yu