Boston.com tours abandoned T infrastructure

In Transportation by Greater City Providence7 Comments

The Boston Globe takes a tour of some abandoned MBTA infrastructure.

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  1. Providence also has its bits of abandoned infrastructure, most notably the East Side train tunnel (not to be confused with the bus/streetcar tunnel), and the abandoned drawbridge. They both have a single preserved train track running over them from the freight rail days, with not much left of the electric railway operation. I wonder who’s actually responsible for maintaining those, and if they’d ever have an official tour.

  2. Very interesting. I’d heard of abandoned subway tunnels in Boston but had never seen them.

    And here in Providence, we have two huge tunnels under the city to store overflow sewage.

  3. It’s a sad irony that the Mass Pike obstructs reuse of one of the tunnels. At least Providence’s rail tunnel remains intact. New York has abandoned stations and lines as well, though lacking a Mass Pike like interruption could be reuse.

    Americans are so cavalier about disposing of significant infrastructure|-streetcars, subways, port facilities, and most of the railroads. What was the cost of the Providence sewer tunnel project? How does that price compare with the mile long Eastside rail tunnel costs a hundred years ago, adjusted for inflation?

    In 50 years will people lament the destruction of the interstate highway or airport systems?

  4. I find it interesting that the Broadway trolley loop was only in use for 2 years.

  5. The East side rail tunnel is in the care of the State, if care is the right term. They haven’t been too interested in letting people in there, although there is interest. The lift bridge over the Seekonk was also part of that line. All of it was big deal when built. We just through so much away, and then sometimes we build it all over again. If we keep at it we can have 1890s transportation system again.

  6. Maybe the Eastside Rail Tunnel could be used for the proposed RIPTA Providence Street Car/Light Rail System that is being proposed, as a subway tunnel . In addition the proposed College Hill Sub-Hub could be built above it making the station into a subway station, aka Brown University/College Hill Station.

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