Frank's Photography Site

Boston MBTA "T" Lines - 1977

The Boston, Mass. MBTA had become known simply as the "T" when I arrived in March, 1977
for a two year stay in the area. The "Green Line" consisted of 4 streetcar lines (B,C,D,E),
with a portion of it running as a subway downtown. Most of the time the PCC's were coupled
together as multi-unit "trains". The "Red Line" also had a separate Ashmont-Mattapan line
which used single PCC cars in shuttle service. The "Red Line", however, was primarily a
third rail subway-surface line, which was eventually extended much further south into the
suburbs. The "Blue Line" was the shortest, running from downtown towards the airport in the
east, but the east (outer) end featured switching over from third rail to catenary for the last
few stops. The "Orange Line" was also partially a subway line, a direct descendent of the
oldest in the city, the "Boston Elevated". At that time (late 70's) it still had its original
ancient "EL"section intact through the Roxbury area (south of downtown), which was torn down
in 1987 when the line was reconfigured. The north end of the Orange Line had already
been reconfigured by 1975, and its "EL" structure lost to history. The "D" route of the
Green Line was the newest, having been created from an abandoned Boston & Albany rail line,
and streetcar service was started in 1959. While PCC streetcars ran on all other Green Line
routes, this line featured the new Boeing LRV cars beginning in December, 1976. There was also
an "A" line to Watertown, but with no scheduled service since 1969, it served only as a long
route to a storage yard at the end of the line, and it was eventually abandoned and paved over
between 1994-1996. The "E" line was cut back as well, short of its Arborway terminus.

Green Line "E" car at Huntington Ave., Boston, at Northeastern University (3/10/77).

Green Line "E" car, Huntington Ave., Boston, at the YMCA, heading into the
subway portal northbound on March 10, 1977.

Huntington Ave., Boston, at Northeastern University (3/10/77).

Two 2-car PCC trains running in the street median at Coolidge Corner
(Harvard & Beacon Streets), in Brookline, Mass., on March 10, 1977.

Coolidge corner, at the same date and time.

"Station" stop at Coolidge Corner, Brookline, Mass. (3/10/77).

Yard/work area at the small yard at Lechmere, PCC's on layup
& a work engine with a trolley pole (3/10/77).
Work trolley is 2026 built in 1910 and now residing at Seashore in Maine.

Green line car heading back toward Boston at Lechmere (end of the line ramp) - 3/25/77.
After the subway portion downtown, the Green line became elevated and crossed the
river towards Cambridge for the two final stops, Science Park & Lechmere.

Blue Line trains at Revere, Mass., operating under catenary, March, 1977 (2 photos).

Harvard Square (Cambridge, MA), with a Red Line subway station and an underground
bus / trolleybus station & loop, March 1977.

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