The MBTA Route 39 bus is moving to its permanent location this Saturday, October 14th. The move will occur following the end of bus operations on Friday, October 13, as the 39 will cease operating from the Route 39 loop at the northern end (towards Doyle’s Café and the Monument) of the Forest Hills Station block. Beginning with the start of bus operations on Saturday, October 14, the Route 39 bus will operate from the upper busway at the MBTA Forest Hills Station, according to a press release from the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT). Passengers looking to access the 39 should exit to the upper busway as normal and turn to their right as they exit the station. The area that was occupied by the Route 39 loop will immediately become part of the Casey Arborway work zone.
As the Casey Arborway project continues the area is being altered on a regular basis, leading to detours and unfamiliar driving scenarios. Come this Friday there will be an important detour to be aware of. Also, next week the Massachusetts Department of Transportation will be holding office hours to discuss the project. Beginning at 10 pm on Friday, August 25, and running to 5 pm on Saturday, August 26, traffic exiting South Street onto Washington Street west (towards the Arnold Arboretum) of the MBTA Forest Hills station will be unable to turn left on South Street. Also, northbound (towards Doyle's Café and the Soldier's Monument) traffic on Washington Street will be unable to turn left into South Street. MassDOT said this temporary closure is necessary to complete paving the middle portion of Washington Street.
Tree by tree, sections of the Casey Arborway are being replanted. On Tuesday, resident Clay Harper noticed 21 plane trees being planted along the western section of the massive project. The plantings come two years after clearcutting of hundreds of trees around Forest Hills Station. By the time the road realignment project is completely done - current estimates put that at Spring 2018 - MassDOT says the area will have 400 more trees than when the project began. We've been following the Casey Arborway project's ups and down for years.
Forest Hills Station will be taken back down to one track starting March 25 as part of the Casey Arborway project. The plan is the same as from when the T shut down one track from September through December. This time, instead of installing a jet fan needed for the new station entrance north of New Washington Street, the closure will make it easier to do electric work and build "underground elements" required by the massive project, MassDOT said in an advisory issued Wednesday. During the last stretch of one-track operation, the T said its plan for rush hour would not cause added delays. The September-December closure allowed the following work on the Casey Arborway project to be done:
Jamaica Plain's "Little Dig" -- AKA the Casey Aborway -- is scheduled to pass a key benchmark this week. Shea Circle, the part of the Arborway where Franklin Park meets the main entrance to Forest Hills Cemetery, will take a giant step toward becoming Shea Square. The stop lights in the new configuration are to be turned on for the first time on Thursday. Transportation planners say a signalized intersection will be more efficient than the large circle it is replacing. Here's what the finished product should look like:
Here are the details on which traffic movements will be affected the next two weeks, as outlined by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation:
On or about December 15th the traffic signal will control Shea Square for the first time.