Freetown Station
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Freetown Station
Freetown
LocationSouth Main Street
Assonet, Massachusetts
Coordinates41°46?21.55?N 71°5?37.28?W / 41.7726528°N 71.0936889°W / 41.7726528; -71.0936889Coordinates: 41°46?21.55?N 71°5?37.28?W / 41.7726528°N 71.0936889°W / 41.7726528; -71.0936889
Line(s)Fall River Subdivision
Platforms1 side platform (planned)
Tracks2
ConnectionsBus transportSRTA: 2[1]
Construction
Parking173 spaces
Bicycle facilities8 spaces
Disabled accessYes
History
Opening2023 (planned)
Services
Preceding station MBTA.svg MBTA Following station
Fall River South Coast Rail East Taunton

Freetown is a planned commuter rail station on the Fall River Subdivision in the Assonet village of Freetown, Massachusetts. Under current plans, the station would open for MBTA Commuter Rail service in 2023 as part of the first phase of the South Coast Rail project.

History

Previous stations

A postcard of Assonet station

The Fall River Railroad opened from Myricks to Fall River in June 1845, and to South Braintree in December 1846.[2] Two stations were located on the line in Freetown: Assonet at Elm Street, and Crystal Spring (Thwaites) at Copicut Road.[3]Somerset Junction (Millers) - the junction with the Dighton and Somerset Railroad - was located further to the south in Fall River.[2] Service was later consolidated under the Old Colony Railroad and then the New Haven Railroad. Passenger service on the line continued (except for 1949-1952) until September 5, 1958.[4] However, local stops including the two Freetown stops were discontinued well before then, and trains ran nonstop from Fall River to Taunton.[5] The line continued to be used for freight service by the New Haven and its successors Penn Central and Conrail, then finally as the CSX Fall River Subdivision.[2]

South Coast Rail

In September 2008, MassDOT released 18 potential station sites for the South Coast Rail project, including a Freetown station off South Main Street near the Route 24/79 expressway.[6] A 2009 conceptual design called for a single side platform serving one track, with a second track allowing freight trains to pass the high-level platform.[7] Plans released as part of the Final Environmental Impact Report in 2013 were nearly identical.[8] On June 11, 2010, the state took ownership of the Fall River Subdivision and several other CSX lines as part of a sale agreement.[9]

In 2017, the project was re-evaluated due to cost issues. A new proposal released in March 2017 called for early service via Middleborough by 2024, followed by full service via Stoughton by 2029.[10] Freetown would have only been built as an infill station during the second phase.[11] By mid-2017, plans called for the first phase to be completed in 2022, and to include stations at Freetown and Battleship Cove in Phase 1 rather than Phase 2.[12] The January 2018 Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Report moved the planned station about 0.2 miles (0.32 km) north, as the previously planned site had been developed for use by a business.[1]:44

The MBTA awarded a $159 million contract for construction of the Fall River Secondary portion of the project, including Freetown station, in May 2020. Service was then planned to begin in November 2023.[13][14]

References

  1. ^ a b VHB/HNTB (January 31, 2018). "Chapter 2 - Alternatives Analysis". South Coast Rail Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Report. Massachusetts Department of Transportation.
  2. ^ a b c Karr, Ronald Dale (2017). The Rail Lines of Southern New England (2 ed.). Branch Line Press. pp. 401-405. ISBN 9780942147124.
  3. ^ "Town of Freetown". New Topological Atlas of Surveys, Bristol County, Massachusetts. Everts & Richards. 1895 – via Ward Maps.
  4. ^ Humphrey, Thomas J.; Clark, Norton D. (1985). Boston's Commuter Rail: The First 150 Years. Boston Street Railway Association. pp. 34-36. ISBN 9780685412947.
  5. ^ "Table 19: Boston-New Bedford-Fall River". THE SCENIC SHORELINE ROUTE SERVING NEW YORK AND NEW ENGLAND. New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad. April 24, 1955. p. 31 – via Wikimedia Commons.
  6. ^ "South Coast Rail Fact Sheet: October 2008" (PDF). South Coast Rail. October 2008. Archived from the original (PDF) on August 12, 2017.
  7. ^ "Freetown - Freetown Rail Alternative" (PDF). Massachusetts Department of Transportation. June 30, 2009. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 21, 2012.
  8. ^ "Figure 3.2-27 Freetown Depot Station Conceptual Station Design" (PDF). Volume II: FEIS/FEIR Figures Final Environmental Impact Statement/Final Environmental Impact Report on the South Coast Rail Project proposed by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers New England District. August 2013.
  9. ^ "The Massachusetts Rail Program" (PDF). Massachusetts Department of Transportation. June 2010. p. 7. Archived from the original (PDF) on May 24, 2012.
  10. ^ Dungca, Nicole (March 22, 2017). "State changes gears on Middleborough commuter rail plan". Boston Globe. Retrieved 2017.
  11. ^ "Notice of Project Change". Massachusetts Department of Transportation. March 15, 2017.
  12. ^ "South Coast Rail Corridor Map" (PDF). South Coast Rail - Summer 2017 Fact Sheet. Massachusetts Department of Transportation. Summer 2017. p. 3. Archived from the original (PDF) on September 5, 2017.
  13. ^ "South Coast Rail Main Line Construction Contract Approved" (Press release). Massachusetts Department of Transportation. May 11, 2020.
  14. ^ Tabakin, Jennifer (May 11, 2020). "MBTA Construction Contract No. K78CN03: Fall River Secondary Commuter Rail Expansion Project" (PDF). Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority.

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

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