Orange Line, parts of Green Line to close at same time

The MBTA announced that the Green Line will shut down between Government Center and the Union Square Station partly to accommodate work for the remainder of the Green Line Extension project– at the same time the Orange Line will shut down for overdue repairs.

Riders at North Station, served by both the Orange and Green Lines, said they’re worried about the double shutdown in just a few weeks.

“They should have spread it out better,” said one frustrated commuter. “They have the funding, I believe. I don’t see a reason why so many projects should be shut down at once.”

MBTA officials said a portion of the Green Line needs to close between August 22 and September 18 to allow for the demolition of the privately owned Government Center garage, as well as for work on the new Medford Branch of the GLX. The extension was set to open this summer, but has been pushed back to late November.

“Obviously, we don’t like to be in the position of pulling service back like this,” said MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak. “But in this case, it advances a number of our capital reliability and safety projects.”

Some riders have already begun thinking about how their routines will change once the changes take effect, despite the fact that the MBTA will provide 22 free shuttle buses for riders.

“It’s frustrating cause I have to work,” said commuter Wendell Blackwell about relying on the shuttle buses. “It’s very frustrating. I don’t know what I am going to do.”

The MBTA’s Poftak said the Green Line closure was planned before the Orange Line closure. Now that they’re happening at the same time, he said the MBTA would rather inconvenience customers once than several times.

“I just don’t know how they are going to get everybody around town,” said a T commuter. “I mean people need to get to get to work, people need to see their family, their kids. How are they going to get there.”

The Green line shutdown announcement comes the same day new video obtained by 7NEWS shows the piece of loose metal that MBTA officials say caused an Orange Line train car to catch fire in July.

The piece of metal can be seen hanging off the front of the train before video captures a flash of light and a mass of smoke.

The Federal Transit Authority are still investigating the incident.