A new image shows a "severely deteriorated" support column at the Government Center Garage in downtown Boston that disrupted MBTA service last month.
The image, obtained by the NBC10 Investigators in a records request, shows a corroded column surrounded by work equipment. It was the only image of the column the MBTA had; MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak was set to discuss it at a board meeting Tuesday.
An MBTA representative said that the new steel visible on the sides of the column was put there to reinforce the structure.
The structural issues at the Government Center Garage, which is being demolished, were discovered June 23, requiring the MBTA to suspend service on the Green and Orange lines around Haymarket Station. Train service was replaced by bus service, extending some commuters' travel time by hours.
The MBTA has blamed the issue on the private construction project at the garage, where a construction worker was killed back in March.
The project contractor, HYM Construction, advised the MBTA that garage support columns that pass through the T’s tunnels were “severely deteriorated” near Haymarket Station, creating an unsafe environment in the tunnel area where Green and Orange line trains operate.
"This service disruption as a result of HYM's project is unacceptable and the MBTA will seek to hold HYM Construction accountable for all costs associated with this event," Poftak has said in a statement. "Riders' safety is our top priority and unfortunately, as a result of this private party's project, we must divert trains until the tunnels can be inspected and cleared by independent experts."
HYM has said the issue is "unrelated" to its work on the Government Center Garage.
"This afternoon a team of engineers conducted a survey of the MBTA tunnels underneath the Government Center Garage. A subsurface column in proximity to the Green and Orange Lines was identified as compromised from years of water damage," read a statement Thursday night from the National Real Estate Advisors and the HYM Investment Group. "The condition of this column is unrelated to the demolition work at the Government Center Garage. In an abundance of caution, the MBTA is diverting operations around the Haymarket MBTA Station."
MBTA officials said in the wake of the March collapse that more than 100 tons of debris were removed from directly above the Green Line and structural engineers carefully assessed the tunnels to ensure their safety. Engineers were expected to continue to monitor the tunnel.
The demolition is part of the $1.5 billion Bullfinch Redevelopment Project. The finished project is expected to include a parking garage surrounded by office and apartment buildings. The site has been under demolition for some time.
The issues at Government Center woes are among a series of issues that have plagued the MBTA in recent months.