An Orange Line train pulls into the MBTA's Wellington station.

Roadway traffic will be “severe” for the duration of a 30-day Orange Line shutdown, and effects could begin to pop up as soon as Monday as local and state officials begin carving out additional space for shuttle buses ahead of the Friday night closure, the state’s top highway official said.

Four days before the greater Boston region wades into uncharted territory, MBTA and Baker administration officials said they expect headaches to be nearly ubiquitous across different modes of travel for workers, students, visitors and employers.

Riders can hop on the commuter rail in Zones 1, 1A and 2 by flashing a CharlieCard or CharlieTicket. The MBTA will also run free shuttle buses on the northern and southern ends of the Orange Line and encourage riders to transfer to the Green Line for connecting downtown service.

The addition of a fleet of replacement shuttle buses to the area’s already notoriously clogged roadways will exacerbate traffic, and Highway Administrator Jonathan Gulliver cautioned current T riders against getting in the car themselves.

“I know that some of the transit users may be considering driving as an alternative to the shuttle buses. I assure you that that is not a good option and you should look to other transit options,” Gulliver said.

Changes are underway at the local level to free up additional space for shuttle buses to maneuver and travel more freely, which Gulliver said will leave roadway capacity in some areas “effectively cut in half.”

T Diversions Could Cut Some Roadway Capacity in Half

by State House News Service time to read: 1 min