Mockup of Boston's New Subway Car on Display

Just over 400 of these new cars will replace current Red and Orange Line trains by 2023.

MBTA Countdown Clocks
Boston Globe—Boston Globe via Getty Images

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority is giving the public a preview of its new subway cars, reports Boston.com.

The MBTA has put a mock-up of the new Red Line cars on display at Boston City Hall Plaza. (Ironically, the nearby Government Center stop is not served by the Red Line.) This sample appears to be two-thirds the length of a normal subway car, with only two doors on either side instead of the usual three.

"Our customers’ experience has always been one of my top priorities as general manager," Luis Manuel Ramírez, chief executive and general manager of the MBTA, told Boston.com in a statement Monday. "It’s important that we get their feedback on the mock-up before we move to the production phase of the procurement."

The mock-up came to Boston all the way from the China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation's factory in Changchun, China. However, the actual subway cars are planned to be built at a subsidiary in Springfield, Massachusetts.

The Red Line will get 252 of these new cars, plus another 152 for the Orange Line, by September 2023. These will replace the oldest rolling stock and expand the size of the subway fleet. The MBTA hopes to have Red Line trains running at three-minute intervals during rush hour rather than the current four to five-minute intervals, enabling the line to transport up to 10,000 more passengers per hour, according to The Boston Globe.

MBTA personnel will be on hand at City Hall Plaza to get feedback from visitors about the new cars to help refine any potential improvements before production begins. The Drive plans to pay a visit ourselves to see how the new Red Line cars compared to the old ones, some of which date back to the 1970s.

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