By Carlos Lopez
Special to the Leader Herald
The recent development of the Silver Line (SL-3) running through Chelsea has paved the way for Everett to possibly become the next city directly interconnected with the center of Boston.
The SL-3, the newest addition to public transportation in Chelsea, opens up traffic to a different section of Boston, and with it also comes the potential of connecting local residents to entirely different job markets and social experiences.
The Silver Line not only improves transportation within Chelsea, but allows speedy trips to Logan Airport and a connection to the Red Line for anyone in the immediate area.
An extension into Everett could afford its residents similar benefits.
Ned Keefe, Deputy City Manager of Chelsea, stated “The key to transportation is the
predictability of it. The hope of the Sl-3 is to streamline residents from home and to the workplace reliably and with minimal delays,” he said.
Joseph Monty, the Transportation Planner for the City of Everett, commented “The Silver Line would be a great asset by providing transit access to areas that currently have none and reduce congestion in the city as it continues to grow.”
For implementation of a Silver Line extension in Everett, the MBTA would have to take the lead and fund the project.
MassDOT’s Everett Transit Action Plan estimates an increase of 75,000 jobs by 2040, and is projected to double Silver Line ridership.
The project is estimated to take at least five years to complete.
The SL-3 has been a welcomed addition to Chelsea’s infrastructure. Each stop is both resourceful for locals and any others simply wishing for a direct trip to Boston’s South Station.
And to add to its appeal, each stop is conveniently located.
The first is stationed across from what is the largest Market Basket on the east coast. The second stop lands right next to the purple line commuter rail. The third location connects Chelsea’s Box District, a congregation of fairly new condominiums and apartments home to hundreds of residents. The fourth and final Silver Line stop connects residents to the buses heading towards terminals within Logan Airport.
The Everett Transit Action Plan plans to extend the Silver Line from Market Basket to Malden Center via Second Street, Broadway and Ferry Street.
The partnership would include improvements to city owned streets to accommodate the Silver Line. Also adding to its universal appeal, announcements at the bus terminals are not only in English but Spanish as well.
Developments like this are heavily important to a multicultural communities like Everett and Chelsea.
Around 20% of Everett’s population are Spanish speakers and another 15% speak Portuguese. If the SL-3 project becomes extended to Everett, the city could take the opportunity to not only further Everett’s infrastructure but build a connection with its residents by including Spanish and Portuguese announcements at the bus stops.
Mario Merino, a lifelong Everett resident, when asked about a possible extension of the SL-3 into Everett said, “I see it as a good thing because a lot of the people who live in the Chelsea area take public transportation already, so the Silver Line creates a new route in the congested public transportation system,” said the 20-year old.
He later added, “Routes out of Everett toward Boston already experience heavy traffic so an extension could alleviate the congested flow.”
With the right design and sufficient funding, Everett could be well on its way to bigger and better developments to its transportation system.