1459 words Arlington Centre station - Wikipedia

Arlington Centre (signed as Arlington) was a regional rail station in Arlington, Massachusetts. Located in downtown Arlington, it served the Lexington Branch. It was closed in January 1977 when service on the Lexington Branch was suspended.

Arlington station 1925 postcard.jpg
Arlington station around 1910
LocationMystic Street, Arlington, Massachusetts
Coordinates42 degrees 24′58″N 71 degree 09′12″W / 42.416239 degrees N 71.153294 degrees W / 42.416239; -71.153294Coordinates: 42 degrees 24′58″N 71 degree 09′12″W / 42.416239 degrees N 71.153294 degrees W / 42.416239; -71.153294
Owned byMassachusetts Bay Transportation Authority
Line(s)Lexington Branch
Other information
Fare zone1
Opened1846 (original)
October 1965 (MBTA)[2]
ClosedMay 16, 1958 (original);
10 January 1977 (final)[1][2]
7–12 daily (1976)[1]
Preceding station MBTA.svg MBTA Following station
East Lexington
toward Bedford
Lexington Branch Lake Street


Arlington Centre station on an early postcard

The Lexington and West Cambridge Railroad opened from West Cambridge to Lexington on September 1, 1846.[3]Arlington Centre station was located near the intersection of Massachusetts Avenue and Mystic Street in Arlington.

On April 18, 1958, the Boston and Maine Railroad received permission from the Public Utilities Commission to drastically curtail its suburban commuter service, including abandoning branches, closing stations, and cutting trains. Among the approved cuts was the closure of the Lexington Branch's four stations in Arlington (Lake Street, Arlington Centre, Brattles, and Arlington Heights), as Arlington was part of the funding district of the Metropolitan Transit Authority, which provided parallel bus service on Massachusetts Avenue.[4] The four stations were closed on May 16, 1958.[3][5]

Due to community input, Arlington Centre station was reopened in October 1965, followed by Lake Street in March 1968.[1][2] On a typical day, no more than 7 to 12 passengers used Arlington Centre station; although taking the Lexington Branch allowed one to reach downtown faster than if one had used the 77 bus and the Red Line (transferring at Harvard, then the northwestern terminus of the Red Line), it had only one round trip per day (one train inbound to Boston in the morning, and then one back out to Bedford Depot in the evening) and was substantially more expensive.[1]

In January 1977, following a major snowstorm which temporarily shut down the Lexington Branch, stranding a train at Bedford Depot, the MBTA announced that commuter rail service on the branch would not be restored.[6] In the 1980s, the MBTA planned to extend the Red Line through Arlington and Lexington to Route 128 along the former path of the Lexington Branch as part of the Northwest Extension, including renewed service to Arlington Centre station, but fierce opposition from Arlington residents scuttled this plan, and the Northwest Extension was cut short to Alewife in northwestern Cambridge.

The only surviving stations of the Lexington Branch are Bedford Depot and Lexington; Arlington Centre was demolished at some point following the branch's closure.[6]


  1. ^ a b c d Massachusetts Executive Office of Transportation and Construction (22 April 1976). Capital needs developed at the corridor level: core and west (Report). Massachusetts Executive Office of Transportation and Construction. p. 101.
  2. ^ a b c Belcher, Jonathan. "Changes to Transit Service in the MBTA district" (PDF). NETransit.
  3. ^ a b Humphrey, Thomas J.; Clark, Norton D. (1985). Boston's Commuter Rail: The First 150 Years. Boston Street Railway Association. pp. 77, 87. ISBN 9780685412947.
  4. ^ "Drastic Service Cuts Approved on Five B.& M. Divisions". Daily Boston Globe. 19 April 1958. p. 11. ProQuest 845709366.
  5. ^ "B.&M. Closes Saugus Branch, 3 Other Lines". Daily Boston Globe. 17 May 1958. p. 3. ProQuest 845520009.
  6. ^ a b "About the Lexington Branch". Friends of Bedford Depot Park. Retrieved 9 July 2015.