BU East, Central T Stop Construction Begins Monday

Drastic renovation of the Boston University East and Central T stops will begin Monday, a week behind schedule, according to Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority spokeswoman Lydia Rivera.

Construction of an interim T stop between the two existing stops will be the first phase of construction, Rivera said. Train service to the temporary stop will not be significantly different than the service to the two permanent stops. Rivera said she expects no significant disruption in T service to the Commonwealth Avenue campus.

“Everything should run smoothly,” she said.

The construction, which was supposed to begin last week but was delayed in order to complete similar work at the Harvard Avenue and Washington Street stops, will refurbish the T stops in order to accommodate new low-floor Green Line trolleys, Rivera said. The new trolleys are more wheelchair accessible, and the renovated stops will also feature raised platforms.

“In order to accommodate new vehicles we need to reconstruct the inbound and outbound platforms,” Rivera said.

According to a March 13 Daily Free Press article, the renovations are necessary to comply with the Federal Americans with Disabilities Act.

The project will also impact Commonwealth motorists. To ensure ample space for the construction machinery, the parking meters adjacent to the stops will be removed, and parking will be prohibited for the project’s intended six-month duration, Rivera said.

“Unfortunately, parking will be limited during those six months,” Rivera said. The meters will be replaced once the project has been completed, she said.

The MBTA hopes to complete the project by Labor Day, which Rivera said means the majority of the construction will take place while BU students are on summer break.

“We would like to get this job done as quickly as possible,” Rivera said.

Despite fewer parking spaces, Rivera said she does not anticipate any significant traffic disruptions, but she could not confirm whether the contractor, E.J. Sciaba Contracting, would need to close any lanes of traffic. Rivera said the MBTA had no plans to close any lanes.

“The contractor has examined the area to make sure that equipment will not be in the way,” Rivera said.

To avoid disruption of classes in BU’s College of Arts and Sciences, which is adjacent to the site, Rivera said “noise will be at a minimum.”

Rivera also said extra MBTA police details and staff members will be on the site to answer questions and ensure the safety of pedestrians.

BU spokesman Colin Riley stressed the importance of students using designated crosswalks while the construction is underway.

Representatives of the MBTA and the contracting company presented the project’s plans and diagrams to BU’s Pedestrian Safety Committee on Feb. 14. The committee consists of police, traffic safety officials and experts from BU’s School of Public Health.

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