Mass. Pike Construction Project in Allston to Cost $1.2 Billion

The area between Boston University and the Charles River is getting completely overhauled.

Cars in gridlock

Photo via iStock/Grafissimo

The state highway project set to revamp the Massachusetts Turnpike in Allston could cost up to $1.2 billion, the Boston Globe reports.

The plan is to begin re-doing the Allston Interchange between Boston University and the Charles River in 2020 by eliminating a portion of elevated, looping road and replacing it with a straightaway. According to the Globe, a new commuter rail station, bike and walking paths along the river, and a more grid-like street pattern are also part of the renovation effort.

The viaduct that currently supports the raised portion of the Pike is in need of replacement, costing the state roughly $800,000 in annual repairs. The structure’s poor state, which Transportation Secretary Stephanie Pollock characterized as “deficient” to the Globe, was the catalyst for the overhaul, which has been planned since 2014.

The construction, expected to last until 2025, will inevitably affect the thousands of commuters who traverse the Pike each day. Though it will certainly be a headache for drivers, Pollack told the Globe that the project is a chance to “get the interstate right, get the rail network right, and get the rail system right.”

Three options are being considered for the project, each of which comes with a price tag of roughly $1 billion. Two of the three plans would eliminate the viaduct altogether and rebuild the road on the ground, presumably creating a less obstructed sightline to the river.

Though there’s no consensus just yet about who will actually pay for the plan, transportation officials told the Globe they think Harvard should pitch in.