Overpass replacement to be ‘Casey Parkway’

Project timeline announced

The revised schedule for the newly-renamed Casey Parkway project was announced last night at the first Design Advisory Group (DAG) meeting.

The “25 percent design,” or first draft, for the replacement of the Casey Overpass with the new parkway will be presented to the community in October. The 75 percent design is expected by March of next year; the final design is expected by July.

Bidding by contractors will begin in October 2013 and construction is expected to be finished by October 2016, the design team announced.

The DAG, a renamed version of the previously-named Working Advisory Group (WAG), can expect to meet at least once a month—possibly more—between now and August to continue advising the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT), design team municipal liaison John Romano said.

The DAG will focus on construction management, protecting local neighborhoods from cut-through traffic, maintaining MBTA bus travel times, coordinating with and providing mitigating measures for local small businesses, and not impacting the plan for the Arborway bus yard.

The Casey Overpass is the State Route 203 bridge over Washington Street and Hyde Park Avenue at the Forest Hills T Station. The aging bridge must be demolished. The process has been fraught with controversy since it was first announced in late 2010.

Some members of the DAG are still not convinced a surface road network would be a better replacement than a smaller bridge.

“There will be no further discussion on a bridge,” Romano said.

The replacement surface street—the Casey Parkway—will replace New Washington Street with six lanes. It is expected to cost $52 million and includes roughly $20 million in improvements and MBTA station upgrades.

The Arborway bus yard, located at Washington Street and the Arborway, was built as a temporary facility eight years ago and is three years overdue to be replaced by a permanent facility. The permanent facility is ready to begin being built as soon as funds are located.

The state Casey project website is at massdot.state.ma.us/caseyoverpass.

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