$1.4 Billion Transportation Bill Would Block MBTA Station Naming Rights

This year's transportation bond, a huge piece of legislation full of earmarks, includes a provision to keep corporate sponsorships out of the names of T stations.

Some legislators want to block the MBTA from putting a company's name in front of . 

A provision of the $1.4 billion transportation bond would put the kibosh on, say "Dunkin' Donuts Downtown Crossing" or "Barclays Bank Back Bay."

That's just one item in the huge bill, which the Globe reports passed the Senate on Tuesday. A version had previously passed the House. A conference committee is hammering out the details between the two. Their deadline is the end of the legislative session on July 31.

The bill contains long lists of pet projects for communities around the state, some of which could be vetoed by Gov. Deval Patrick.

Here's the exact wording of the station naming rights provision, which was sponsored by Senators Sonia Chang-Díaz, Will Brownsberger and Sal DiDomenico, all Democrats.

SECTION XX.  The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority shall not sell station naming rights pursuant to any corporate partnership program or otherwise in which the name of the entity being awarded naming rights comes before the station name.  The preceding sentence shall apply to the following 11 stations: Airport, Back Bay, Boylston, Copley, Downtown Crossing, Harvard, Kendall/MIT, North Station, Park Street, South Station, and State. 

Other provisions affecting Boston include $500,000 to repair the Freedom Trail in the Union Oyster House area, set up a special investigator to hunt for Big Dig cost recovery and make changes to the way the Rose Kennedy Greenway is run.

You can scroll through the various projects in the bill by visiting this link and clicking the "Amendments" tab.


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