|The bus near the Commuter Rail station.|
|Trundling past downtown Framingham.|
|Going past the reservoir.|
|A look at downtown.|
|An apartment development hidden in the trees, just before crossing into Hopkinton.|
|A frozen-over pond!|
|What a great terminus...|
Ridership: With 17,243 riders in 2015 (about 69 per day), the 5 is one of the least-used routes on the MWRTA. Still, it has pretty consistent ridership throughout the day, and actually gets a lot of reverse commuters heading to the office parks near the route.
Pros: The route serves an important street and two towns within the service area. It's also great that the schedule is consistent; the route runs every 65 minutes. Sure, it's an ugly number, but consistency in MWRTA schedules is always a good thing (they have some crazy headways on some routes).
Cons: Service is weekdays-only right now, but I think that's about all the route needs. One problem with the route is that it really ought to be extended a little further from its terminus - there's a gigantic Dell office park a little further down the road that would be great to serve during rush hour!
Nearby and Noteworthy: I didn't find downtown Ashland or Hopkinton Center to be particularly captivating, but those are the two most interesting places the route serves...
Final Verdict: 6/10
MWRTA does a great job catering to reverse commuters up along Route 9, but I think they could do a lot better with it on this route. I don't see any reason why the route shouldn't serve that gigantic Dell office park during rush hour! On the flip side, the 5 still serves significant towns within the service area, and its headways are nice and consistent.
Latest MBTA News: Service Updates