The MBTA, which has reduced services across commuter rail and other modes of transportation during the pandemic, introduces a new schedule on April 5 that includes more regular trips throughout the day that stop at Natick’s two stations. Feeling flush with hundreds of millions of dollars in COVID-19 relief funds, the T has begun restoring services across its bus, subway and commuter lines.
The T is going lighter on train frequency during traditional rush hour periods in the morning and late afternoon in light of changed commuter patterns, and introducing roughly hourly trips throughout the day. You’ll still have a few choices during rush hours, however.
The commuter rail remains fairly useless for those in Natick looking to attend events in Boston at night, especially on weekends, when the last trains from Boston leave at 9pm. Not that there are that many events going on these days.
Meanwhile, at Natick’s train stations
The MBTA is taking advantage of the lack of passengers to speed ahead with accessibility improvements at the Natick Center station slated for completion in 2022. When work is completed, the station will include 2 new elevators, 2 accessible ramps, 6 stairways, new platform, pedestrian bridge, drainage improvements and bicycle parking.
Looks like the MBTA has introduced new single-rider commuter vehicles in light of low ridership on trains. But no, it's just a construction vehicle working on improvements at Natick Center station @MBTA_CR pic.twitter.com/HtSIVCxMOr
— Natick Report (@NatickReport) April 2, 2021
Over at the West Natick train station, workers are preparing to install solar panel canopies in the parking lot that could save on electricity costs and reduce snow removal burdens. Let’s hope it’s a more efficient operation than the one that took place in Hingham.
For now, this curious little solar panel installed a while back above a trash or recycling can is the starting point.