Cement pillars connected by steel beams are now the most visible signs of the progress of the $2.3 billion MBTA Green Line Extension project. Project manager John Dalton told NBC10 Boston that they are still on track to finish by 2021.
"We're probably about 20% complete, done," Dalton said during a tour of the site on Wednesday.
He added that there’s always a schedule crunch with a project of this magnitude.
The next big step of the project requires crews to shift existing Commuter Rail tracks to make way for the new Green Line.
In-depth news coverage of the Greater Boston Area.
"It's a big effort because obviously the MBTA's main business is moving people and we want to minimize impact to that primary mission while also getting the Green Line extension built," Dalton said.
The 4.7 mile extension of the Green Line will soon connect Cambridge, Somerville and Medford. Currently, 20% of residents in Somerville can walk to the train but when the project is finished, it will jump to 80%, according to Dalton.
"It's a real game changer for people who live in this area," he said.
Six new stations will be built, including the relocation of the current Lechmere Station.
In spots along the sprawling construction site, work is literally happening right next to people's homes.
Monica Berber lives right near the work site in Cambridge, but she’s also in favor of the project.
"Yes, I just live in that building just across the street and it’s been very noisy," Berber said.
It's something Dalton is fully aware of.
"What I would say is it’s short term pain for what is going to be a long term gain," Dalton said.