MetroWest Regional Transit Authority & Kiessling Transit~~Edition 6, Volume 7, May 2, 2022

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Hub Happenings

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May Holidays

May 1- May Day

May 1- National Loyalty Day

May 1- Silver Star Service Banner Day

May 1 - National Small Business Week

May 1 - Public Service Recognition Week

May 1 - Military Appreciation Month

May 1 - Jewish American Heritage Month

May 1 - Eid al-Fitr

May 5 - Cinco de Mayo

May 6 - National Military Spouse Appreciation Day

May 8 - Mother's Day

May 20 - National Defense Transportation Day

May 21 - National Armed Forces Day

May 22 -National Armed Forces Day

May 22 - Harvey Milk Day

May 30 - Memorial Day

A Note From the Administrator

By: Ed Carr, MWRTA

With two newsletters left to write, I believe the time is right for the following. 

Over the years, a few of my friends have told me that they think I have vision; I believe that they think I can see things before they happen, that I can predict things, or that I have new ideas which have not come to fruition yet…but when they do…they call it vision…or some combination of the above. 

I, on the other hand, believe that ideas come from interaction with others through brainstorming, listening, necessity, or the euphoria of alcohol and drugs. In my youth, some of my best ideas came as a result of that particular kind of euphoria. At 75 years old, however, the ideas I have now are a result of experience. The more one knows…the more one knows what they don’t know.

The fact is that an idea is absolutely nothing but a dream…a cloud…a wisp of nothing unless one does something about it. Renaissance man Leonardo da Vinci once said, "I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do."

As I extricate myself from MWRTA, I have visualized that these things will get accomplished someday by someone:

  • Driver shortage will be mitigated by autonomous vehicles, yet customer service jobs will still be required by public transportation, and nice people will always have a job.
  • Freight and rapid transit will meld together in a single lane on major highways, allowing for large savings in highway maintenance which is predicated on axle weight on the surface of the roadway. That single lane will be dedicated and reinforced as well as electrified. Safe and autonomous driven freight and transit vehicles will lower the cost of transporting goods and people, as well as lower the cost of road maintenance.
  • Public transportation vehicles will be powered by a compressed natural gas, hydrogen, and solar roof combination which will minimize emissions.
  • Fully electrified Demand Response fleet.
  • All high school students upon graduation would be given an inexpensive electric car, subsidized by the community that educated them.
  • Beginning in FY23, the US National Defense Budget of $782 Billion will be cut by $1 Billion to $781 Billion.
  • Beginning in FY23 Peace Corps Budget of $410.5 Million will increase by $1 Billion to $1.41 Billion.  
  • Rail Trails everywhere will become more than just bike/pedestrian thoroughfares! They will incorporate people movers (Like Disney World) on the sides, overhead, and/or underground, wherever and whichever is feasible, to serve all people, and in particular those with ambulatory disabilities and the frail and elderly.
  • The MWRTA will create East/West fixed routes on Route 20 from Marlborough to Riverside, as well as North/South routes on Routes 27, 85, and Edgell Road, then concentrate on perfecting Micro-Transit to feed them.
  • MWRTA will purchase available contiguous property to create daycare opportunities, a gym, and an auto body shop.
  • 75% of Administrative, Call Center, Dispatch, etc. roles will be performed by people with disabilities.
  • MWRTA will continue to provide space for a non-profit Veteran’s Office.
  • Pay increases, based on merit, will continue to be given annually.
  • All Commuter Rail trains will be equipped with a Forward Observing Drone that will fly out in front of the train and send back pictures and warnings to the engineer.
  • Healthcare costs will be provided by the Authority.
  • Fares should and will be free for everyone, like most roads.
  • Framingham Intermodal Hub, which is located at the commuter rail station, will morph into the most comprehensive Intermodal facility in the state with the build-out and connectivity of the Chris Walsh trail, the walkability of Nau Way from Waverly St. to Leland St., the interjection of Intercity buses (Greyhound, Peter Pan, Coach, etc.) opening up connections to all of New England, New York and beyond, local MWRTA buses, Micro Transit, shuttle options, downtown trolley, and possibly a swan-boat ride on Farm Pond. This would be predicated on the rehabilitation of the Pearl Street Garage. The Fitchburg Spur would be open to both freight and passenger service with stops at FSU, 9/90, and a terminus in Marlborough. The Mansfield Spur would be open to both freight and passenger service with a terminus at Gillette.
  • Other stations along the Commuter Rail within the MWRTA district will have an MWRTA presence (lease with MBTA) to ensure safety, security, and cleanliness.
  • All Councils on Aging will become mini-transportation companies, providing shuttle service during commuter hours which will subsidize their daily activities. All will be connected to central dispatch and scheduling provided by the MWRTA and fully subsidized by the Authority.
  • The Cochituate Rail Trail would have a mechanism for providing dual-use (pods, gondola, and/or electric trolley) to accommodate people with ambulatory disabilities as well as the frail and elderly. 
  • An Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) would be created by the drivers who believe in themselves, meritocracy, and providing exceptional service to the community they live and work in.
  • RIDE transfer at Riverside will be at a small facility manned by MWRTA with restroom accommodations for MWRIDE customers, allowing the Authority to expedite service.
  • HST contracts would be administered by each individual RTA according to member communities instead of two contracts for the whole state.
  • 3 shifts in maintenance will ensure security on the property.
  • Russia is put in her place. China stops human rights violations. Ukraine finds peace. 

Employment Opportunities

Click Here To See All Employment Opportunities

Click banners below to view individual job listings.

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Service Updates

By: Emily Van Dewoestine, MWRTA

The MetroWest Regional Transit Authority scheduled a launch of the new fare collection system for Monday, May 2, 2022. Due to supply chain delays, and technical challenges, the launch of fare collection has been suspended until at least mid-summer. Currently, there is no set date for fare collection to resume, due to delays on product deliveries. MWRTA will send out updated announcements when a new, final launch date is set to alert riders of the upcoming changes. MWRTA ensures that riders will have advance notice before launching the new collection system, and will have ample time to receive their new cards and set up their fare accounts on the MWRTA Catch App.

Riders of all MWRTA services, including Fixed Route, Demand Response, and Catch Connect, will continue to ride at no cost until fare collection is resumed in the coming months.   

Please continue to check the MWRTA website at for updated information. Individuals may also follow MWRTA on Twitter @MWRTA, or Instagram and Facebook @MetroWestRTA for updated information. 

Blandin Updates

By: Tyler Terrasi, Paula Doucette, & Joy Glynn, MWRTA

As the temperature outside becomes warm and spring weather beckons us outdoors, our Grants Department has been hard at work revising and creating essential documents that outline the steps MWRTA is taking to efficiently, effectively, and equitably serve the public while complying with federal, state, and local regulations. This information is critical as it ensures the funding organizations that we are doing our part to not only increase diversity and opportunity but also address the harmful effects of climate change.

MWRTA’s first Equity Plan, summarizing the authority’s initiatives to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion in MetroWest, was released in December. With the assistance of several team members, we have also worked to compile a Zero-Emissions Fleet Transition Plan. The plan outlines specific innovative steps the authority has taken, and will soon take, to achieve a zero-emissions future and promote healthier, more sustainable forms of public transportation. Complementing this is our recently developed Climate Initiative Action Plan. This plan outlines how our compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling facility, EV infrastructure, solar PV canopy, BigBelly trash receptacles, water reclamation systems, and future innovations, will help mitigate what will otherwise be irreversible harm to our planet.

Through the federal Justice40 Initiative and the Commonwealth’s Executive Order 594, our elected officials have challenged all of us to do everything we can to sustain our planet. MWRTA is well-poised to deliver effective solutions that will preserve our natural resources while encouraging everyone to get out and about on public transportation. We hope everyone will make every day Earth Day – resolve to recycle more, conserve energy, and treat our planet with kindness and respect.


By: Bruce Willens, MWRTA

Hi All, the month of April has been a busy time for the maintenance department! We have been busy installing new fare collection devices in all the Fixed Route vehicles while removing the old fareboxes. Once we receive the rest of the backlogged computer components we’ll be up and running with resumed fare collection! We are also working with MassDOT on new vehicles and believe me, it's been tough not knowing Ford's production capacity and also having issues with bus builders' lack of availability on vehicle equipment. Currently, we have 20 new vehicles on order. Hopefully, we will receive them in the near future!


Be Safe!

Framingham Intermodal

By: David Scott, MWRTA


It's hard to believe that the 2022 Boston Marathon has come and gone but we are proud to say that the crowd was back watching the runners from the parking lot adjacent to Rt. 135. The crowd was entertained by a flyover (I caught it on camera, pictured to the right). Two USAF C-130s from Bradley Air National Guard Base in Connecticut. The Banana Lot offered a nice vantage spot to watch the race. Access was easy in and easy out, so next year plan on being here to watch the 127th Boston Marathon. Take advantage of the $10 Commuter rail pass and enjoy unlimited travel on the commuter rail every Saturday and Sunday. Start your travel from the Banana Lot - East into Boston or head West to Worcester and take in a Woo Sox game. Remember, it starts here at Framingham MBTA station 419 Waverly Street, a hidden gem in downtown Framingham.


By: Giovanni Fleurancois, KTI

The purpose of safety vests is to allow the wearer to be seen and to alert all that a person is present, especially in a low visibility situation. Safety vests are constructed out of reflective material and typically come in a slew of bright colors. Be safe, wear your safety vest.


Safety to the next level!


By: John MacGillivray, MWRTA

With the advent of May, we find ourselves in the middle of Spring and its attendant good weather. We also find ourselves rooting for the Celtics, Bruins, and Red Sox. As a veteran, I find myself thinking about a couple of events that will occur this month: 1) Armed Forces day on May 21, 2022, and 2) Memorial Day which will occur on May 30, 2022.

Armed Forces Day was created on August 31, 1949, by then-Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson to replace separate Army, Navy, and Air Force Days. The event stemmed from the Armed Forces’ unification under one Department of Defense by then-President Harry S. Truman when he signed the National Security Act into law on July 26, 1947. 

Armed Forces Day is the day to honor all who currently serve and all who have served in the Reserves, National Guard, or are on active duty.

Memorial Day is an American holiday, observed on the last Monday of May, honoring the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military. Originally known as Decoration Day, it originated in the years following the Civil War. Eventually, it became a federal holiday. In years gone by this used to be a well-observed holiday in which much thanks was given to those who sacrificed their lives in order to maintain our country’s freedom. Today, many people utilize this holiday to head to the Cape, have a cookout, etc. Be that as it may, I ask that you take a few moments to think about the great sacrifices made by those who fought for our freedom.

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An Important Question. Do You Know the answer?

By: Dinyar Sepai, KTI

According to Operation Lifesaver, a person or vehicle in the United States is hit by a train every three _______.

A) Years  B) Hours  C) Days  D) Months E) Weeks

See Puzzle Corner for the answer.

Reasons to Ride a Bike

By: Linda Murtagh & Eva Willens, MWRTA

Not only is bike riding good for the environment and your health, but it’s also actually good for your mental well-being as well.

Did you know that when you ride a bike regularly you can expect: improved mood, decreased stress, reduced anxiety, reduced feelings of sadness or depression, improved memory, and improved sleep.

A common mental health benefit of exercise is alleviating physical and mental stress. It is important for people to reduce stress for overall health and to reduce the risk of developing certain illnesses.

Biking is a great way to get outdoors, enjoy the spring weather, and reap the health benefits of peddling to your heart’s desire. Biking is an economical and environmentally-friendly transportation option.

Even half an hour of daily exercise can improve peoples' moods and well-being, so if you are looking for a great way to boost your positivity and save the environment at the same time, try riding a bike!!


B-etter mental health

I-ncreased endorphins

K-ind to the environment

E-xcellent way to exercise



*Did you know you can fit 15 bikes into one car parking space?*

Travel Training and Outreach

By: Jon Fetherston, MWRTA

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After a two-year absence due to the worldwide pandemic, the MetroWest Regional Transit Authority had the pleasure of attending the Framingham Earth Day Festival on Saturday, April 23, 2022.

The MWRTA provided a free shuttle from downtown Framingham to the Festival location on the Framingham Centre Common.

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The MWRTA also had a table at the festival. The picture-perfect day was a great way to interact with the public and discuss the MWRTA Fixed Route, Demand Response, Catch Connect, and Travel Training opportunities the MWRTA provides for Framingham and travel throughout the MetroWest area.

The festival also featured live music, hearing from Framingham leaders, and many Earth Day-friendly vendors and booths. The MWRTA’s reusable bags, eco-friendly reusable straws, and frisbees were a big hit.

The MWRTA is looking forward to being part of MetroFest 2022. The annual MetroFest arts, music, and food festival returns to Framingham’s Bowditch Athletic Complex on Saturday, June 11, 2022.

Stay tuned for more updates. See you there!  

Puzzle Corner

By: Kathy Cibelli, MWRTA

The answer to the important question is: B) Hours

Please enjoy this puzzle provided by Kathy of the MWRTA Call Center! Answers to this puzzle are below.

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Puzzle Answer Key

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