First weekend of Cape train service successful, Wareham stop planned
More than 750 people rode the rails during the first weekend of summer passenger rail service from Boston to Hyannis. And, as long as the service is continued, officials say Wareham will be a stop on the line next year.
"There will be a stop in Wareham next year," said Tom Cahir, administrator of the Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority. "If the train runs, there will be a stop in Wareham."
This year's "CapeFLYER" service, which launched on Friday, May 24, is a pilot effort to ease Cape traffic. The inaugural service was designed to provide a foundation for potentially expanded service next summer.
It's off to a good start.
"We were astounded by the numbers," said Cahir, explaining that despite soggy weather, 770 people rode over the weekend. "We were absolutely amazed at the response that we continue to get. ... We couldn't be happier, considering the inclement weather."
Crews had been completing work on the tracks in recent weeks in order to accommodate CapeFLYER trains going 55 mph.
The idea of the faster trains worried Wareham residents and town officials. To alleviate safety concerns, the trains slowed down to 30 mph in Wareham, Cahir said. That caused a few scheduling issues and late-arriving trains, but passengers didn't seem to mind.
"They thought it was better than sitting in traffic," Cahir noted, and said that most of the passengers were traveling from the metropolitan Boston area.
"It was a good weekend," Cahir said. "A good first start."
The CapeFLYER completes Boston to Hyannis runs on Friday evenings and Saturday and Sunday mornings, and Hyannis to Boston runs late Friday nights and on Saturday and Sunday evenings.
Service runs through September 2, and will run from South Station in Boston to the Hyannis Transportation Center. The closest stop to Wareham right now is in Buzzards Bay.
For more information, visit www.capeflyer.com.