Kendall/MIT (MBTA station)

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Kendall Sq Inbound Platform.jpg
Inbound platform, with historic timeline and images from nearby Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Location Intersection of Main, Third Streets and Broadway, Cambridge, MA
Coordinates 42°21′44″N 71°05′10″W / 42.3623°N 71.0862°W / 42.3623; -71.0862Coordinates: 42°21′44″N 71°05′10″W / 42.3623°N 71.0862°W / 42.3623; -71.0862
Owned by Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority
Platforms 2 side platforms
Tracks 2
Bicycle facilities 58 spaces
Disabled access Yes
Opened March 23, 1912
Passengers (2009) 13,975 (weekday average boardings)[1]
Preceding station   MBTA.svg MBTA   Following station
toward Alewife
Red Line
toward Ashmont or Braintree

Kendall/MIT, formerly known as Kendall Square, is a station on the rapid transit Red Line in Kendall Square at the intersection of Broadway and Main Street, in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Trains emerge from the Red Line tunnel just east of the station to cross the Charles River via the Longfellow Bridge. The station includes the Kendall Band, a public art installation of hand-operated musical sculptures that hang between the tracks at the station platform level which are operated by levers located on the side walls of the two platforms. The Kendall stop also features a prominent timeline detailing the history of the nearby Massachusetts Institute of Technology. There is no crossover within fare control; to reverse direction one must exit and re-enter the station, passing through fare gates again, or go to another station.

Station layout[edit]

G Street Level Exit/Entrance
Platform level
Side platform, doors will open on the right
Outbound Red Line toward Alewife (Central)
Inbound Red Line toward Ashmont/Braintree (Charles/MGH)
Side platform, doors will open on the right

There are two side platforms serving two tracks. This station has no crossover mezzanine.


From the early 20th century through the 1970s, the MBTA operated a powerhouse above ground in Kendall Square, including cycloconverters to transform incoming AC electrical power to 600 volts DC power fed to the third rail to run the subway. An old-fashioned cycloconverter consisted of an AC motor coupled to a huge, slowly rotating flywheel coupled to a DC generator, hence the name. With the development of compact modern semiconductor-based power rectifiers, the old mechanical technology became obsolete. The MBTA powerhouse was demolished, and replaced with an office building located at the convergence of Broadway and Main Street.

Nearby destinations[edit]

Headhouse for inbound trains

Bus connections[edit]


Kendall/MIT is wheelchair accessible.


Kendall/MIT Station is a proposed stop on the MBTA's planned Urban Ring Project.[2] The Urban Ring will most likely be a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Line designed to connect the current MBTA Lines to reduce congestion at the downtown transfer stations between subway lines, as well as decrease trip times.[citation needed]

Kendall Band[edit]

Main article: Kendall Band

The Kendall Band is a three-part sculpture created between 1986 and 1988 by Paul Matisse, the grandson of Henri Matisse and stepson of Marcel Duchamp.[3] Located between the inbound and outbound tracks of Kendall Station, the art work is seen by approximately 12,500 riders on an average weekday,[4] and cost $90,000 to construct.[5]

The three parts of the interactive work are called "Pythagoras", "Kepler", and "Galileo", and are all controlled by levers located on both subway platforms.[6] The works fell into disrepair, though in 2010 students from MIT began restoration.


  1. ^ "Ridership and Service Statistics" (PDF). Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority. 2010. Retrieved October 28, 2012. 
  2. ^ Urban Ring Phase 2 FACT SHEET[dead link][dead link]
  3. ^ Christopher Reed. Pure Fabrication. Harvard Magazine. May–June 2002. Accessed May 26, 2010.
  4. ^ MBTA Bluebook. MBTA. 2007. Accessed May 26, 2010
  5. ^ Daly, Gabriel J. and Velan, Sonam S. T-Riders Ring the Sound of Science. The Harvard Crimson. December 7, 2006 . Accessed May 27, 2010.
  6. ^ Grace notes from the underground. The Boston Globe. May 9, 2010. Accessed May 26, 2010.

External links[edit]