At the request of the Massachusetts Legislature (Bill H.4828, Chapter 204 of the Acts of 2018), the MassDOT Office of Performance Management and Innovation (OPMI) has conducted a comprehensive review of MBTA Commuter Rail fares, and we are pleased to share our report from this study.
The report identifies the principles that are currently used to set Commuter Rail fares, analyzes the existing fares in the context of MBTA fare policy objectives, and makes recommendations for the MBTA.
See the MBTA Commuter Rail Fare Study to read the report.
The team conducting the study gathered and analyzed data from a variety of sources to explore the fares for each station and zone. We looked at factors including ridership, travel distance, parking capacity and pricing, walkability, travel times and costs for different modes, nearby population and jobs, and station area demographics. The report describes the sources we used and the assumptions we made to develop general station- and zone-level summaries; however, the impact of fares on individual riders or communities can vary dramatically depending on location, travel needs, personal preferences, the availability and cost of travel alternatives, and many other case-specific factors. In order to allow readers to see the detailed data behind the summaries in the report and to look at alternative assumptions that might apply better to specific circumstances, we are providing a table of station-level data gathered for the study. You can download that station-level data here.