The MBTA meeting on Thursday outlined a number of objectives for the system’s future, including higher ridership, more affordable fares for low-income families, and an overall safer and more effective experience.
Travelers looking for a change in Boston and the surrounding regions are most concerned about transportation issues.
“It could have been faster, for sure. T rider Hunter Wieckowski commented, “I believe it’s a bit costly; I pay $360 for the monthly commuter pass on Rail 7A.
Governor Maura Healey made a major financial announcement this week about public transportation systems.
Healey stated, “It will make historic commitments to the MBTA,” on Wednesday as she unveiled her budget.
An announcement that is much needed given the MBTA’s sharp declines in income and ridership. The agency is spending more money than it is bringing in on track upgrades, safety precautions like cameras and training, and employing more employees after the outbreak, but they are running out of money and need more since government funding has dried up.
A portion of the fix? The state is contributing forty million dollars to lower low-income communities’ fares in an effort to attract new T riders.
MBTA General Manager & CEO Phillip Eng remarked, “The beauty of this is that what we’re looking to do is to be able to support riders across our whole territory.”
Low-income customers will see a 50% fare reduction from the T. Advocates for transportation expressed their encouragement at the prospect.
“People are making a lot of tradeoffs to be able to afford the fare. Giving up meals, passing up basics, just staying at home. We can help it by bringing the T fares down,” according to Susanne Bohme of the Public Transit Public Good Coalition.
However, can the T afford to reduce fares? According to Engineer, improvements to the rail and safety will result in less money spent on issues and more consistent ridership.
“It’s going to make mass transportation an even bigger part of growing the economy, quality of life and the ability for people who want to live, work and play in the Commonwealth,” stated Eng.
In March, the reduced ticket for low-income passengers will receive official approval. By summer, the program will then be put into action;