The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) has announced that it plans to keep Green Line and Orange Line rail service suspended in the tunnels that travel beneath the Government Center Parking Garage, which collapsed last Saturday, pending an inspection of the area's infrastructure.
"The T will not resume rail service through this area until a team of structural engineers, examining and assessing infrastructure above and below the surface, confirms that subway service can safely resume," the organization said in a statement.
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Boston Police Captain Kelley McCormick made clear that the suspension was a necessary precaution in ensuring the safety of passengers.
“We want to make sure the tunnel underneath wasn't damaged from the weight of all the collapsing material," said McCormick.
Boston Fire Commissioner John Dempsey echoed the importance of the safety inspection, saying "Any building being demolished is a very dangerous scene, probably more dangerous than when they are building them up."
Orange Line service will be suspended from North Station to Back Bay, while Green Line service will be suspended from North Station to Government Center. The T is offering shuttle bus service from North Station to Government Center, while regular Orange Line commuters are encouraged to utilize the stations between Park Street and Copley if their destination lies between Downtown Crossing and Back Bay.
For many in Boston, the T is essential for getting around the city. But not only is it already essential, the tunnels being temporarily suspended are for one of the busiest parts of the city: Government Center.
"My life revolves around the Orange Line," said John Butz, a daily commuter. I take it to work; my son takes it to school."
The MTBA suspension of the tunnels in one of the busiest parts of the city will force many to make adjustments to their daily schedules. But given the circumstances of the delays, patience is something Boston residents have plenty of.
"I can walk," continued Butz. "The weather is getting nice, it's just a few stops, we'll make due."
There will be extra MTBA personnel available to assist commuters with the changes. The MTBA also encourages regular commuters to work from home if possible.