Mass. Pike Changes Could Improve Daily Commutes
MassDOT has reviewed the overcrowded interchange and has presented it’s findings to the Hopkinton Board of Selectmen.
For hundreds of commuters headed in to Boston each morning the Route 495 and Route 90 interchange creates a serious problem according to the Massachusetts Department of Transportation’s latest findings.
Have no fear MassDOT says, changes are near.
In 2012 Congressman Jim McGovern, D-Worcester, was able to secure fund to study the backup of traffic on Route 495, Route 90 and Route 9.
The plans for the Route 495 and Route 90 interchange include adding lanes to the exit ramps from I-495 so people traveling through the interchange can avoid weaving.
“The primary thought process behind this recommendation was that every movement throughout the process would be assigned a lane,” Callie Cenizal, MassDOT’s Project Manager, said. “With the advanced signage and warning you would be able to stay in a lane and not have to weave between lanes.”
Also included in the plan is a separate exit off Route 495 northbound to Route 90 eastbound. This ramp would allow for a smoother, straighter transition for cars and would improve the backup caused by vehicles slowing down to make the turn through the toll booth.
The project, according to Cenizal, was designed to be implemented after Mass. pike eliminates cash tolls and goes to an EZ-Pass only system. However it can work with the tolls as they are currently set up.
One of the major concerns Hopkinton’s leaders raised was about the traffic that will avoid the intersection during the construction.
“There is a concern on Hopkinton’s part that during construction people hoping to avoid the work will start using local roads and one of the local roads that will be impacted is our West Main Street,” Town Manager Norman Khumalo said.
Traffic at the interchange is already at or above capacity during rush hour and Cenizal said it is expected to rise another 15 percent by 2035.
A final draft is expected to be submitted to the Secretary of Transportation within a few weeks. At that point it will go to the engineering stage.
More information about the project can be found on the MassDOT's website .