Even if you’re new to Boston College, you’ve probably already noticed that BC isn’t exactly in the heart of Boston. Although it may take a 20 minute Uber ride to get downtown, taking the T is a much more affordable and practical alternative… that is, if you know how to use it right.
Let’s start off with the basics. The T has four main lines: the Green Line, the Red Line, the Orange Line, and the Blue Line. The Green Line has four of its own lines which are the B line for Boston College, the C line for Cleveland Circle, the D line for Riverside, and the E line for Heath.
Naturally, one would assume the best way in and out of Boston would be to take the B line from the Boston College T stop. But don’t be fooled, the B line is the worst option if you want to get into Boston quickly. The immense number of stops on the B line adds an incredibly large amount of time to your commute and is simply not worth it.
The fastest way to get into Boston would be to take the D line from Reservoir, one of its stops. The Reservoir T stop is located up the hill from Cleveland Circle and across from the Chestnut Hill Reservoir, hence the name. Getting to this T stop is a piece of cake—simply board the Comm. Ave. bus and it will bring you directly to the Reservoir T stop along its route.
From the D Line, you can get off at the Fenway or Kenmore stops if you're going to a Red Sox game or maybe a House of Blues concert in the Fenway area. Exit at the Hynes Convention Center stop to go shopping or grab a bite to eat on Newbury Street. One stop later is Copley, which is located right in front of the Boston Public Library, in case you’re sick of studying at Bapst. The final stop on the D Line is Government Center, which is located in the core of the city. This is the perfect stop to get off at if you want to go shopping at Faneuil Hall Marketplace or eat a meal at Quincy Market.
However, as convenient and comfortable as the Green Line may be, it cannot always get you everywhere you need to go. If you want to spend a day in Harvard Square, get off of the D Line at Park St to transfer to the Red Line bound for Alewife, which will bring you across the Charles to the Cambridge area. In order to get to Jamaica Plain without taking the bus, transfer to the Orange Line from the Park St stop on the D Line as well. However, be very careful not to exit the T stop at Park St. In order to reach the Orange Line you must walk through an underground concourse that leads you to the Downtown Crossing stop of the Orange Line. Although this sounds complex, all you have to do is follow the orange paint and the plethora of signs for the Orange Line. The Orange Line can either take you north toward Oak Grove or southwest toward Forest Hills. Take the outbound Orange Line toward Forest Hills if you need to go to Jamaica Plain.
The Orange Line and Red Line highlight the comfort and general cleanliness of the Green Line and remind you never to take it for granted. From shattered glass to fabric seat cushions just barely hanging on, these lines are always an adventure to ride on. Although the overall dingy atmosphere of these lines leaves you feeling like you're in a horror movie, particularly at night, they get you where you need to be on time and at an affordable price.
Last but not least is the shortest and almost always forgotten Blue Line. You can transfer to the Blue Line from Government Center, the last stop on the D Line. The Blue Line is helpful if you want to go to the Boston Aquarium or need to catch a flight at Logan International Airport—just exit at the Aquarium or Airport T stops respectively.
Taking the T may seem like a daunting task, especially if you’ve never used MBTA transportation before. But as long as you remember to never take the B Line and keep an eye out for your stops, you’ll be traversing the city in no time.