|Location||South Main Street|
|Line(s)||Fall River Subdivision|
|Platforms||1 side platform (planned)|
|Bicycle facilities||8 spaces|
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.
The Fall River Railroad opened from Myricks to Fall River in June 1845, and to South Braintree in December 1846. Two stations were located on the line in Freetown: Assonet at Elm Street, and Crystal Spring (Thwaites) at Copicut Road.Somerset Junction (Millers) - the junction with the Dighton and Somerset Railroad - was located further to the south in Fall River. 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. However, local stops including the two Freetown stops were discontinued well before then, and trains ran nonstop from Fall River to Taunton. 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.
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. 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. Plans released as part of the Final Environmental Impact Report in 2013 were nearly identical. On June 11, 2010, the state took ownership of the Fall River Subdivision and several other CSX lines as part of a sale agreement.
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. Freetown would have only been built as an infill station during the second phase. 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. 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.: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.