|Gosh, I'm such a sucker for character...|
|A different kind of building!|
|An express train, having already whipped past the station!|
Ridership: Well, this kinda puts a bad mark on the Fitchburg Line's overall ridership - Concord is its third-busiest station after South Acton and Waltham, with 592 riders. The fact that it gets more ridership than Fitchburg is kinda sad, considering the sizes of the two towns (well, Fitchburg is a city, but I digress). Still, I guess lots of people commute from Concord to Boston, and many students use the station to get to and from nearby Concord Academy, so there's that. But...Fitchburg has over double the population of Concord! Okay, I'm sorry, but this greatly confuses me.
Pros: There's no denying that the place has character, especially on the outbound platform - that building is simply spectacular. But other than character (and ice cream) Concord really doesn't offer much. I mean, the parking's free, but I'm not sure if it's explicitly station parking or just general use. Such a small lot would get filled up regardless of price, anyway.
Cons: For starters, the inbound platform is a mess. You know how this is one of the busiest stations on the Fitchburg Line? Well, I can't imagine dozens of commuters trying to cram under that shoddy little bus shelter! Meanwhile, the outbound platform fills up with litter because it doesn't have a wastebasket (the inbound side has multiple, for reference), and the whole station isn't even accessible! Finally, the train has to spill out into two level crossings when stopped here, which is always annoying.
Nearby and Noteworthy: Concord is a really lovely town with lots of history. Concord Center is a short walk from the station, and it offers a great small-town feel. Even the little cluster of businesses near the station is worth checking out!
Final Verdict: 5/10
Sorry, Concord, but your beautiful building isn't gonna save you this time. If the inbound side could get better shelter and some mini-high platforms in general, the rating would shoot up, but at the moment, this station is surprisingly barebones. Yes, it's charming. Yes, it has ice cream. But it also has level crossings, dodgy parking, and no accessibility. No, thanks.
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