New Blue Hill Avenue station hailed at dedication ceremony

Gov. Charlie Baker offered remarks during a ceremony to officially open the new Blue Hill Avenue station on the Fairmount Line last week. Daniel Sheehan photo

Governor Charlie Baker, Mayor Martin Walsh, and other city and state officials gathered last Thursday for the dedication of the $17 million Blue Hill Avenue station on the Fairmount Line, which offers a direct link to South Station in about 23 minutes.

According to Keolis, which operates the commuter rail line for the MBTA, the Fairmount line can point to a strong performance rating in recent months, including a 96.6 percent on time performance so far in 2019. Since Keolis took charge of the rail line in 2014, there are 2,500 more train trips annually. Data show that the line’s ridership has grown by more than 200 percent since 2012.

“We’re pleased to see that with this new station’s opening, there are more transportation options available to the communities surrounding Blue Hill Ave. and Mattapan Square,” said Keolis CEO and General Manager David Scorey. “The Fairmount Line has one of Commuter Rail’s best rates of on-time-performance, and with 40 daily trains, Blue Hill Avenue passengers can travel to or from South Station in less than 30 minutes. As ridership grows on this line,” he added, “Keolis will continue to partner with the communities we serve and market the service to new riders.”

Mela Bush, a longtime advocate for more Fairmount Line access, encouraged residents to take advantage of the train line’s expanded service.

“When I was a little girl, I used to look through the fence at the trains going by; I could never get on one,” she said. “We need to own this. We need to get on board. We need to celebrate by using this train to access the opportunities it provides.”