The MBTA Is Fixing Up Its Busiest Bus Routes (And Adding Shelters)

Waiting for some of the most popular buses won't be so cold come winter time.

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Bus trips are about to get a little bit better for some MBTA riders.

Officials announced on Monday that the transit authority’s 15 key bus routes that run through the Greater Boston area were bound for a facelift, including improvements to pathways leading to stops, adding trash cans to waiting areas, and installing new shelters for those standing outside for transportation services. “The MBTA is looking forward to improving the quality of amenities and service on some of our most utilized services,” Dr. Beverly Scott, the MBTA’s general manager, said in a statement. “This aggressive and ambitious project will reduce trip times, enhance customer comfort, accessibility, convenience and safety, and make service more reliable and cost-effective.”

The improvements will be to “Key Bus Routes”—those that operate for the full span of service, seven days per week, and at higher frequencies to meet passenger demand. This will include improvements to bus routes 1, 15, 22, 23, 28, 32, 39, 57, 66, 71, 73, 77, 111, 116, and 117, officials said. These particular bus routes hit more than 885 bus stops in eight communities, and typically transport nearly half of the T’s total bus passenger count.

The project is being paid for through grants awarded to the MBTA through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and is scheduled for completion by the end of August. Riders can expect to see work going on at key bus stops through the summer.

Once completed, riders will notice that some stops will be missing as the T plans on consolidating the number of times buses pull over to pick up passengers along their respective routes.This action will speed up the travel process for both drivers, and riders. New benches, shelters, ADA-compliant access, and signage will be added to the routes that are part of the overall project.

In April, the MBTA announced that they would be looking to improve other parts of their infrastructure, and had plans to introduce additional “Pedal and Park” stations, keeping transit riders’ bikes safe in a secure cage that can only be accessed with a pre-registered Charlie card.