The MBTA is taking a different approach to reassessing their bus routes this year with the Better Bus project. Instead of asking how to cut service, they’re asking how to improve reliability, travel times, and overall ridership. Best of all, the MBTA is looking for feedback. The reports provide a great deal of data for each route, as well as proposals for improvement and the trade-offs being made. The numbers for Newton aren’t impressive and the changes may not seem significant, but in some cases (such as the 59) they’re proposing changes to sections which have followed old trolley routes from a century ago.
Proposed changes to Newton’s routes include:
- Simplifications to 52 and 59 routes, eliminating variants and adding more frequent service to Needham Street. A few years ago, Newton was at risk of losing these north-south routes.
- Elimination of loops around the Circle of Death in one direction for express buses in Newton Corner.
- A shorter route for the 60 bus, skipping the Chestnut Hill Mall and terminating at Chestnut Hill Square instead of Langley Road in Thompsonville (yes, that is Thompsonville)