Orange Line service suspended from Sullivan Square to Tufts Medical Center

Oct. 3, 2019
The service will be shut down for six consecutive weekends starting Oct. 4.

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) is suspending Orange Line weekend service between Sullivan Square and Tufts Medical Center station beginning Oct. 4 for six consecutive weekends as part of the MBTA’s 2019 Capital Acceleration Plan. 

Accelerated work taking place on the Orange Line during these six weekends includes improvements at Downtown Crossing, Haymarket and State Stations. The MBTA will replace and add new signage, clean, paint and repair stairs/tile within the stations. The T will also replace 2,250 feet of track and clean and paint within Chinatown Station. The addition of these six weekend shutdowns allows the MBTA to complete work on the Orange Line level of these stations almost a year earlier than previously planned. 

“As part of our efforts to build a better T, these weekend shutdowns will allow us to deliver improvements in safety, service and the customer experience sooner than originally planned,” said MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak. “While we acknowledge major diversions in regular service can be inconvenient, these shutdowns are needed to execute an investment plan of this size and expedite completion of this work.”  

During these six weekends, bus shuttles will be provided between Sullivan Square and Haymarket Stations. There will be no shuttle bus service to Orange Line stations at State, Downtown Crossing and Chinatown with customers asked to travel via parallel downtown Green Line service.  

The six weekends the Orange Line service will be suspended are: 

  • 8:45 p.m. Oct. 4--6 

  • 8:45 p.m. Oct. 11–13 

  • 8:45 p.m. Oct. 18–20 

  • 8:45 p.m. Oct. 25–27 

  • 8:45 p.m. Nov. 1–3 

  • 8:45 p.m. Nov. 8–10 

More details on the work 

MBTA crews and contractors will also remove and completely replace the pit track in closed Orange Line stations during these six weekend closures, which would not be accessible to work crews without a complete shutdown. The Orange Line pit track in these areas is 30-to 40-years old and, while safe to travel over at reduced speeds, is also ready to be replaced.  

The broad limits between Tufts Medical Center and Sullivan Square are necessary as these areas are "portal" access points for work crews to load in construction equipment and materials into the underground portions of the Orange Line. The broad closure limits also give the MBTA a work window to perform repairs to platform edges, escalators, elevators, stairways and fare equipment; perform track and power maintenance in the tunnels between stations, including the complete replacement of third rail insulators and third rail electrical connections; and perform tunnel debris clean-up work, reducing the risk of smoke and fire hazards.