|The bus coming toward Lechmere on McGrath Highway.|
|In terms of the route, this picture comes before that first one, but I just like the first one more...|
Leaving Davis Square behind, the street became lined with dense houses as we passed a field and playground. The retail came back at Teele Square, where we merged onto Broadway. It was a decent mix of houses and businesses until we reached the three huge apartment buildings of Clarendon Hill. Here, we turned into the busway and let the few remaining passengers out.
|The bus, with one of the apartment buildings behind it.|
Ridership: On weekdays, this is the busiest "80" route out of Lechmere, with 4,075 average riders. It drops a bit below the 87 on weekends, but the ridership is still high - 2,794 riders on Saturdays and 1,664 on Sundays. My Saturday ride had pretty good ridership, with about 30 people in total.
Pros: This isn't the only bus route on Highland Ave, but it might as well be, since the 90 runs about as frequently as a sack of potatoes. Luckily the 88 can pick up the slack, since its schedule is pretty good: every 16-20 minutes during rush hour, every 20-25 minutes during the day, every 20 minutes on Saturdays, every 30-40 minutes at night, and every 40 minutes on Sundays.
Cons: Honestly, there isn't much. The only real complaint I have is that the night and Sunday schedules aren't that frequent. And the latter could be more efficient, with two buses operating with long layover times at Lechmere.
Nearby and Noteworthy: Davis Square, simple as that. I'm sure there are other fine businesses along the route, but you'll find the highest concentration of good ones in Davis Square.
Final Verdict: 8/10
Well, the three "80s" routes from Lechmere have all gotten consistent 8s, and for good reason, too. They all serve very dense neighborhoods, and they all have pretty decent and efficient schedules. Sunday is the only time when the 88 doesn't run that often, but it has to be said that it's coordinated with the 87 to run every 20 minutes, which is much better. Not enough to raise the score, but much better.
Latest MBTA News: Service Updates
Merry Christmas, everyone! The MBTA is running on a Sunday schedule today, just to let you all know.