Next Stop: Phantom Supermarket

June 12, 2009
By

JOHN RUCH

T bus maps invent, move Stop & Shops

A Stop & Shop supermarket is operating inside the Arnold Arboretum, according to one of two incorrect MBTA bus route maps that invent or move supermarkets in Jamaica Plain.

The Route 42 bus map shows the phantom Stop & Shop on Centre Street in the Arboretum, which is also a city park. While the forested park may be a supermarket of sorts for birds and animals, there is no grocery store there.

A Stop & Shop really does exist on Centre Street in Jackson Square. But the Route 29 bus map moves it about 1,500 feet away to Hyde Square, roughly on top of the Hyde Square Task Force’s office.

“Thank you for bringing this to our attention,” MBTA spokesperson Joe Pesaturo said in an e-mail to the Gazette about the map errors. “MBTA Service Planning staff will make the neces-sary corrections to the maps. The corrections will be reflected in the schedules/maps that come out this summer.”

Pesaturo did not explain why the current maps include such errors as a phantom supermarket.

There has never been a supermarket in the area of the Arboretum, a Harvard University-owned city park that predates the existence of the Stop & Shop company by about 40 years.

While the Route 42 map’s supermarket is shown in the Arboretum, that spot on the map in real life would be just outside of the park’s borders. The location appears to be the Ad-ams Arboretum Condominiums, a condo mansion complex in a former 19th century mental hospi-tal known as Adams Nervine Asylum. There is not a grocery store there, either.

The bus route maps are available at T stations and the MBTA web site (www.MBTA.com). Stop & Shops are shown on the bus maps because they sell T passes. The blog “Boston Irish” (BostonIrish.blogspot.com) first pointed out the Route 42 map’s “bizarre” phantom super-market last month.

The Quincy-based Stop & Shop corporation did not return a Gazette phone call for this article.

About two dozen bus routes run through JP. The maps for the other routes appear to be accurate. The other routes that run to Jackson Square show the Stop & Shop in its proper place. In a minor quirk, all of the route maps that show Franklin Park label the entire park as “Franklin Park Zoo.”