A Tale of Two Bridges

Last week, we linked to a Globe story about a newly-built bridge that the MBTA was going to have to rebuild after engineers found that it could cause the small brook beneath it to flood. Late yesterday afternoon, we got an email from State Sen. Robert Hedlund’s office, politely asking us to clarify that the Globe had the wrong bridge.

1213111673It is a smaller bridge about 100 yards away from the new bridge that is going to be replaced. (You can kind of make out the bridge in question in the screenshot to the right.)

Here’s the Globe’s coverage.

The MBTA will spend $5.2 million to knock down and rebuild a three-year-old bridge in Scituate, the latest expense added to the still-escalating cost of the new Greenbush commuter rail line.

The Patriot Ledger, however, gets the story right.

MBTA contractors will begin work later this month on a $5.2 million project that will remove and replace a 19th-century bridge over Bound Brook in North Scituate.

The two-lane bridge on Country Way is the second span over Bound Brook to be replaced by the T as part of its Greenbush commuter rail project. In 2005, the T rebuilt an old railroad bridge about 100 yards upstream, next to North Scituate Station.

1213113509In this image, borrowed from TerraServer, you can see both the Greenbush Rail bridge and the Country Way automobile bridge. (Click for big.)

The Globe realized its error, and ran a correction today that completely glosses over what actually happened.

Because of a reporting error, an article in Friday’s City & Region section about a bridge that needed to be replaced as part of the Greenbush commuter rail line project incorrectly reported the bridge’s age. The bridge being rebuilt in Scituate is more than 100 years old and is downstream from a three-year-old rail-crossing bridge.

. . .That you reported was going to be replaced. But the Greenbush rail bridge will remain as it is. It’s the small, century-old automobile bridge that will be replaced.

File this one under journalistic sloppiness, not MBTA incompetence.