|Another view looking the other way.|
|Cool, a station building - ohhhhhhh...|
|Oh dear...I think the photographer is drunk. That's quite crooked.|
|Can you believe that there are two other lots?|
|*gasp* What's this?|
|Why didn't I include this in my summer shuttle post? Oh well...|
|A train with marshland in the background.|
Ridership: Per weekday, the station gets two less riders than there are parking spaces - 812 - making it the busiest station on either branch of the Newburyport/Rockport Lines (but Salem, Beverly, and Swampscott get more ridership on the shared section). Still, I find it interesting that the lot only gets 20% full, which means that most people must commute here in other ways. I also wonder if the data is skewed a bit, since this station must get way more riders in the summer than in the winter.
Pros: The platform is fully high-level, which is always a plus, and the two shelters on the platform are welcome, despite being oddly placed. Newburyport certainly offers lots of parking, and it's a LOT more than necessary, but at least you'll always get a space! And yes, the station is far from downtown Newburyport, but the Clipper City Rail Trail is a really great walk.
Cons: Well, it's a modern Commuter Rail station, so don't expect a lot of character here. However, the Clipper City Rail Trail makes up for that department with its numerous art installations. Newburyport's building just seems like a wasted opportunity, though. If no restaurant or café wants to occupy, then at least stick some seats in there and reopen the bathrooms! It would help make the station feel more hospitable, especially since it's basically in the middle of nowhere.
Nearby and Noteworthy: There's nothing in the immediate vicinity of the station, of course, but if you walk to downtown Newburyport, you'll find an absolutely lovely historical place. It's one of greater Boston's most charming seaside towns.
Final Verdict: 7/10
If the rail trail didn't exist, the score would be much lower. But since the trail is there, you can take a scenic trip to downtown Newburyport even though the station isn't particularly close to it. As for the station itself, it's boring, but it gets the job done fine. Really, its only main problem is that building that's completely closed. Do something with that thing, MBTA!
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