43 (MBTA bus)

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MBTA bus on route 43 heading towards Ruggles Station.

The 43 Ruggles Station - Park and Tremont Streets is a bus route in Boston, Massachusetts run by the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority. The route runs southwest from downtown Boston along Tremont Street, ending at the Ruggles bus terminal and Orange Line transfer point. It is notable as the last streetcar service to use the since-covered over Pleasant Street Portal before its bustitution; until the new Southwest Corridor relocation of the Orange Line opened, the route continued down Tremont Street and Columbus Avenue to Egleston (at the old Washington Street Elevated).

History[edit]

Originally, trackage along Tremont Street and Columbus Avenue was built in 1857 by the West Roxbury Railroad to provide service to Jamaica Plain (see Green Line "E" Branch for more about that line). It used Tremont Street and Columbus Avenue from downtown to Centre Street. Soon after, in 1859, a branch of this line was built west along Tremont Street to Brookline (this later became part of the 66).

The Tremont Street Subway opened to the four-track Pleasant Street Portal on October 1, 1897, and the west two tracks were connected to Tremont Street. However, from June 10, 1901 to November 29, 1908, the Washington Street Elevated was connected into the portal, and Tremont Street streetcars again ran along the surface. At some time around then (after 1888), the tracks were extended the rest of the way to Egleston (and beyond on Seaver Street).

After March 1, 1953, the last day the 9 ran, the 43 was shifted to the two east tracks to allow a bus transfer facility to be built where the west tracks had been. By this time, service ran to North Station, turning around on the lower level loop. Streetcars last reached Egleston on June 14, 1956, after which they were cut back to Lenox Street, with a new bus route (also 43) running from Lenox to Egleston. The Lenox Street service last ran November 19, 1961, and the bus was extended north past the Pleasant Street Portal to Boylston. A shuttle service was kept between the portal and Boylston, with one double-ended PCC car on each track. This shuttle last ran April 5, 1962.

On February 26, 1966, the bus was cut back to Stuart Street due to the temporary closure of Tremont Street. This terminus was kept until June 1972, when service was extended north around the Boston Common to Park Street. With the opening of the new Orange Line in May 1987, the south end of the 43 was truncated to Ruggles, with extensions of the 22 and 29 providing service between Ruggles and Egleston.

References[edit]

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