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Lynn testing new bus layover

LYNN — Buses will no longer idle in the John Flenniken Triangle following a compromise between city officials and the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA). 

Tuesday night, the Lynn Traffic Commission unanimously approved a joint recommendation from Mayor Thomas M. McGee, City Council President Darren Cyr and the MBTA that will create a 90-day trial layover space at 54 Ocean St. The agency will review two other options under consideration at the Lynn/Swampscott line.

“In the meantime, use of the trial layover space and the identification of layover space to be used for the long term will eliminate the need to use space within the John Flenniken Triangle,” according to a statement from City Hall and the MBTA, referring to the intersection of Ocean Street, Eastern Avenue and Lynn Shore Drive. 

Two options under consideration, where buses would park and turn around before getting back into service, are near the intersection of Ocean Street and Ocean Terrace, or at New Ocean and Ocean streets. 

Buses will begin to use the trial layover space next week, when signs are expected to go up. Buses will be permitted to park between 5 a.m. Monday and 2 a.m. Saturday, with residents able to park in the area on weekends, according to Robert Stilian, a member of the Traffic Commission and the city’s acting parking director. 

Stilian said the panel emphasized to the MBTA that buses will not be permitted to double park and idle. 

“Right now, the MBTA is still working on an actual solution as to where the layover will happen,” Stilian said. “The council president felt this was at least a solution to try something. People were less opposed to it than other locations.” 

Under the Better Bus project, the MBTA said it has implemented changes that balance the needs of improving the frequency and reliability of bus service, with the desire to minimize any impacts to the neighborhood. 

In the case of routes 441 and 442, two major routes that service Lynn, changes from the Better Bus Project have resulted in a 50 percent increase in bus service in the Market Street to New Ocean Street corridor. Identifying appropriate space for buses to layover is critical to sustaining that increased service, the statement said. 

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