I've written about having commuter train access for those in the region in the past, and today I am writing again in support of the selectman's plea. The addition of a rail platform on the existing line would be a tremendous boost to the area. Commuters to Worcester, Springfield, and beyond in both directions, would be able to cut their commute time, save oodles of money, reduce wear to the roads, and our environment, and do it all by driving a little bit north to the CSX line, and boarding a train.
No need for tracks. They are already there. Just a station. A sheltered platform. A small investment with incredible returns.
|Widening of the Massachusetts Turnpike from 4 to|
6 lanes looking west toward Exit 9 in Sturbridge.
A rail station would be an amenity that would attract thousands to an area that has been disconnected since the age of the trolley. The turnpike was an innovation designed, and built during the Eisenhower years when the interstate highway system was being constructed countrywide. Based on designs of the autobahn in Germany, modern highways served an incredible importance as our country grew beyond the neighborhoods, and out to suburbia. The turnpike is mainly responsible for Sturbridge being who we are today. Problem is, we are stagnant.
The age of the automobile not only spawned the toll road, but has maintained it. Today, the turnpike is like an old soldier trying on his uniform years after he took it off. It looked great at one time, but it simply no longer fits. The turnpike was built for 1957 traffic, widened for more traffic in the late 1960's. 2014 traffic is too much for the old road . It is no longer the care free road from here to way out there, but a clogged artery that causes accidents, lost patience, constant repairs from the load, and travel times far exceeding the times the highway was orignally built to provide.
The highway brought the people to rural America, but is struggling to get them in and out on a daily basis.
Time to shift gears, and put an option out there. Trains are a fantastic option.
Thank you, Mary, for your passion.
Previous articles on trains for our area:
Thinking Out Loud In Sturbridge: We Have Met The Enemy...
Thinking Out Loud In Sturbridge: Best Regional Idea ...