State wants to widen a stretch of Route 9 in Soutborough

Above: The state proposes widening a 2-mile stretch of Route 9 from Southborough to Westborough
(image via Google Maps)

Last month MassDOT along with regional planning committees shared a series of recommendations to solve the traffic mess that is the Route 9/495 interchange. One of the proposed solutions – widening a stretch of Route 9 in Southborough – has made it into the department’s 10-year plan to upgrade the state’s infrastructure.

The proposal calls for adding a third travel lane on both sides of Route 9 from Crystal Pond Road in Southborough to Computer Drive in Westborough. Funding for the project is dependent on Governor Deval Patrick’s recently-proposed hike in the state income tax.

Reports the

(MassDOT spokesperson Sara Lavoie) said the project is part of the department’s 10-year plan for improving the state’s transportation infrastructure. The additional revenue from the proposed income tax hike would mean that the project could get done in three to five years, she said.

This month the governor proposed a $13 billion program of infrastructure upgrades over 10 years which would be financed through a series of state revenue increases, including a hike in the state income tax from 5.25% to 6.25%.

“If new taxes are rejected,” Lavoie said, “this plan would not get off the ground.”

Widening this stretch of Route 9 was one of a number of recommendations put forth in a transportation report last month. A separate recommendation in the report proposed rerouting traffic from Park Central Drive (the entrance to the Red Roof Inn) onto Flagg Road instead of directly onto Route 9 as it is now.

That recommendation had a number of Southborough residents concerned, but I have not read anything in the local media to suggest it’s part of the current widening proposal. Southborough Planning Board member Paul Cimino said in a comment on this blog the recommendations put forth in the report were designed to be implemented individually.

Area residents are also concerned about the impact a proposed 40B off Flagg Road would have on traffic in this same area of Route 9.

You can read more about the Route 9 expansion plan in this article on and this one by the Metrowest Daily News.

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