NATICK, MA — The MBTA commuter rail is facing major service cuts, but MetroWest commuters this week will have a chance to tell transit leaders what they think.
On Monday, the MBTA revealed the extent of the cuts, which are being proposed amid a major drop in ridership because of the coronavirus pandemic. Ridership is at about 26 percent of what it was before the pandemic — 330,000 daily riders in October compared to 1.26 million per day in 2019.
"I want to reassure our riders that these service changes are not permanent, do not include any fare changes, and will not take effect immediately," MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak said in a statement Monday. "We are carrying out a comprehensive outreach process and encourage all members of the public to provide comments and feedback, as we want to hear from riders to help us identify and protect the services that support transit-critical populations and communities."
For commuter rail service, the MBTA is proposing to stop service at 9 p.m., stop weekend service beginning in January, and reduce the number of peak and midday service trips from 505 to 430. The MBTA may also close some commuter rail stations due to low ridership, but none along the Framingham-Worcester line.
The cuts are a contrast to the recent service boost Framingham-Worcester line commuters got when the "Heart to Hub" express trains began running again.
The MetroWest meeting begins Tuesday at 6 p.m. You can register for the online meeting here.