Plans for Mansfield Train Station Development Discussed

Patch file photo
Patch file photo

The BETA group presented several options for large indoor parking garages and housing around the train station in front of a crowded room at Wednesday night's Board of Selectmen meeting. 

Both residents and the Selectmen expressed concerns about possibly creating more traffic and want to make sure that the plan focuses on what's good for the residents and overall community. 

Voters approved funds to improve access to MBTA parking, reduce traffic, and develop the area around the train station. The plans presented included options for large indoor parking garages and housing.

The projects increase the number of parking spaces from 700 to 800 to over 2,000. The Selectmen expressed skepticism and concern that the plans ignore the quality of life and historical features. 

"I think our responsibility is to the residents first, to accommodate them,"said State Representative Jay Barrows speaking at the end of the meeting. The plans presented were meant for public feedback and 

BH December 09, 2013 at 06:04 PM
Widening 106 to four lanes would be far more expensive than diverting one rail through the industrial park, as it already passes by the edge of it.
Dirk Diggler December 09, 2013 at 06:07 PM
Tina, 106 wouldn't need to widened if the train station was developed off of 140 like I mentioned in my previous post.
HJ December 09, 2013 at 06:10 PM
Tina the new station should go across the street from the Shaw's plaza. There are huge parcels of land on each side that can become parking lots. Instead of burning 13m on your DPW palace, we could buy the land & have a great alternative, Starbucks on the site. Entrance on School Street, West Street & Rt 140 entrance. Who says no? Selectmen, I put it to you to act on this great idea.
BH December 09, 2013 at 07:03 PM
Across from shaws? There are neighborhoods in there. The idea is to divert and reduce traffic. Parking lots right off 140 would seriously back up traffic. Put it inside the industrial park and let traffic filter out the 4 or 5 different exits of the industrial park.
HJ December 09, 2013 at 07:24 PM
I just gave you 3 exits and they can do a 4 way stop on Rt 140 at Norfolk St (already a light there, near Longhorn Steak) so people could turn left out of the parking lot too. There's one lot near the industrial park on the corner of School/140, but everyone parks on one side of the track which would make traffic jams. My plan had parkers on either side of the tracks to people could go in every direction.
BH December 09, 2013 at 07:26 PM
There are houses there, you wanna start taking fellow residents homes by eminent domain?
HJ December 09, 2013 at 07:34 PM
Look at the overhead BH, you don't need to remove houses. Day Ave can be opened up, also there's some slivers of land that also connect to School Street that could have a two lane road. See you at the groundbreaking once this breezes through the approval process.
Tina Mqs December 09, 2013 at 07:45 PM
"Quote: Dirk Diggler December 09, 2013 at 06:07 PM Tina, 106 wouldn't need to widened if the train station was developed off of 140 like I mentioned in my previous post." ......i think it's going to have to be at some point- maybe not now, but in probably no more than a decade from now.
BH December 09, 2013 at 07:49 PM
Boy I'm glad you're not a city planner HJ. You want to further ruin some neighborhoods that have already been ruined by all the 140 development and you want to directly flood 140 with morning and afternoon traffic, adding traffic lights? As long as its not in your backyard huh HJ? Who cares about those residents.
HJ December 09, 2013 at 07:59 PM
That isn't a true neighborhood, it's a main through street. those residents deal with non-stop traffic all day. Half of the traffic goes on 140 anyway, I'm just getting it off 106. After 10 minutes there's still a line westbound on 106. Imagine just having a northbound onramp onto 140 that only requires a yield sign. I ask you, BH. How is this a bad alternative, considering the downtown nightmare we currently have?
Tina Mqs December 09, 2013 at 08:02 PM
That area looks like there may be some wetlands involved. The property at the SE corner of 140/106 has a patch of wetlands, and they cut down all the trees around it, leaving the one little island of trees. I'm not sure a train station would be able to circumvent a similar thing, with the buffer zone, looking at the zoning map here: http://www.mansfieldma.com/assets/images/mans_map2.jpg
Tina Mqs December 09, 2013 at 08:07 PM
If you look at googlemaps and zoom in at the v-shaped junction of the tracks to the right and 140 to the left, what was/was that patch - in the middle of if you drew a line from Day to the Longhorn? Looks like there's a well hole or something. can't zoom in enough.
BH December 09, 2013 at 08:15 PM
You just decide that it's not a real neighborhood? I would love to know your honest feeling if the train was to cut close to your backyard. And don't try to say you'd be fine with it. Trains run all day and night, 2 am, 4 am, doesn't matter. Glad you feel like those residents don't really matter, just toss the train station over there...
HJ December 09, 2013 at 08:22 PM
BH - I live 1/5th of mile from the train, I rarely notice it, even during the summer with the windows open. And those people bought those houses knowing there's constant traffic noise.
BH December 09, 2013 at 08:39 PM
They absolutely did not and you just made my point. Those houses were there when 140 was not developed and YOU don't mind the train. Maybe THEY do, or their kids do. Point is you can put it in an industrial zone just as easily as a residential. I can't fathom why you'd choose to do that to fellow residents.
Tina Mqs December 10, 2013 at 08:25 AM
Putting a station within the park may also raise the occupancy rate. maybe.
BH December 10, 2013 at 11:31 AM
I'm sure it would. Any business owner would realize the value of being able to attract employees from different areas.
BH December 10, 2013 at 11:32 AM
But lets put it near our fellow residents houses because trains don't bother me.
HJ December 10, 2013 at 11:50 AM
Agree with BH.
BH December 10, 2013 at 11:53 AM
Most of your comments don't take into account any impact on anyone but yourself.
HJ December 10, 2013 at 11:57 AM
It's for the good of the town. It would lessen traffic on 106 and the surrounding streets. BH, have you ever been stuck on 106 5-10 min after a train pulls out? It's gridlock.
BH December 10, 2013 at 12:09 PM
What are you even talking about? The train passes by the industrial park on the southeast side, the total opposite side of 106. THIS location would eliminate traffic the most as there are 6 exits from the industrial park for traffic to filter from.
HJ December 10, 2013 at 12:33 PM
BH, that's a tiny lot compared to my idea.
BH December 10, 2013 at 12:35 PM
What lot? I'm talking about space in the industrial park, the highly vacant industrial park, the 850 acre industrial park. I didn't specify a "lot" there is more industrial space in that park than anywhere else in town.
HJ December 10, 2013 at 12:45 PM
The lot at the corner of 140 & School. I was not aware you wanted to demolish buildings. So you don't like my plan at all? C'mon man.
BH December 10, 2013 at 01:03 PM
I don't want to demolish anything. I have no idea why you are making all these assumptions. Have you been through the industrial park in the last 5 years? It's all parking lots and vacant buildings. The current "station" is nothing more than parking lots and an awning.
Tina Mqs December 10, 2013 at 01:05 PM
I still say the 140/school st area has wetlands and buffer zones and i don't think it would be allowed. Actually, looking at googlemaps of the corner of Hampshire st and 106, and at the corner of Hampshire and Cabot, those look like the only two spots large enough- and maybe not then, even. Don't know who owns those though. There's space at the bottom of the 95/495 "x", between Balco and the SC Woodworks. There's the brook there, but the other buildings are close to it.
BH December 10, 2013 at 01:18 PM
It's a parking lot and 15' rail, not grand central station. Buyout some vacant land in the park already zoned for business, stop crowding mansfield center and be done with it.
Dirk Diggler December 10, 2013 at 02:08 PM
If there was an opportunity to buy the property behind Mansfield Marketplace, that would be the ideal location. I used to live around the area between School and 140 and that is mostly wetlands on both sides of the tracks, so that would be out of the question. Honestly, the politicians and the MBTA are going to do everything possible to keep it in the downtown area, unfortunately. Tina, those two locations off of Hampshire aren't even near the tracks so that wouldn't work either. There is no way the MBTA would lay down new tracks off the main line.
BH December 10, 2013 at 02:27 PM
They have laid new tracks in many communities, how do you think the mbta and Amtrak keeps their union employees employed.


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