Framingham blog postings

Framingham Postings

Earliest: December 15, 2009Latest: September 20, 2017Total: 115

September 7, 2016

Framingham MBTA Parking Spaces

New Parking at the Framingham MBTA Commuter Rail Station

The MWRA is in the early stages of building a new parking lot right next to the existing Banana lot in downtown Framingham. There will be an additional 250 parking spaces.

Parking Lot Plans

Once completed, there will be 417 parking spaces available for daily commuters to Boston.

The new lot will allow commuters to park much closer to the station.

Current Status

The MBTA is in the process of cleaning out the 'Y' field area. This was used as a holding area for the rail replacement that has been in process for the past couple of years.

Yellow GateThis Falll commuters will be watching construction of the Parking space.

Framingham Pearl Street Garage

A source at the Framingham Facilities Management has told me that they will not be making any changes to any of their commuter parking lots - including the nearby Pearl Street garage. There are no immediate plans to sell the garage or change parking fees.

The Pearl Street garage will still be the cheapest option for Framingham residences. The MBTA does offer a monthly permit for $70. The Pearl Street garage is only $65 for Framingham residents, non-residents pay $80 a month. However, having the MBTA monthly parking pass doesn't guarantee parking.

Last year the town tried to "gift" the lot to MassBay Community College as an incentive to move to downtown. This didn't work out as the State of Massachusetts didn't approve the necessary funding that MassBay needed to relocate.

There are no assign parking spaces in the garage. You are asked not to park in the basement.

Waverly Street Parking Lot

The Town of Framingham leases the lot across from the Commuter Rail station from the MBTA. This is commonly known as the Waverly Street Commuter Lot. I have learned that there is a waiting list for this lot because of its easier for commuters from Natick or Ashland to get in and out of. At $90 a month, this is a very expense lot, although some people pay $100 or more to park at various businesses near the West Natick Commuter Rail station.

Its uncertain if the new Banana Lot extension will fill up every day since some commuters will have to drive through downtown to get to the lot. Framingham traffic is very busy in the morning.

August 21, 2016

Little Red Wagon Campfire Song

Last week the campers showed visitors to the YMCA camp in Hopkinton, Massachusetts, how to properly sing the 'Little Red Wagon' song.

This is a Repeat After Me song...
You can?t ride in my little red wagon
Front seats broken
And the axle's dragging
CHUG!...CHUG!?CHUG!

SECOND VERSE, SAME AS THE FIRST
A WHOLE LOT LOUDER AND A WHOLE LOT WORSE!

August 14, 2016

Framingham MBTA Commuter Rail Parking

Framingham Parking Lot

It?s been a while since I updated on what?s going on for Commuter?s at the Framingham MBTA station:

Framingham commuter rail stop ranks as the 10th most-used station in the entire rail system with 1,400 riders visiting each day.

According to statistics by the MBTA, the Framingham station had the second most typical Boston bound weekday boardings on the Framingham/Worcester line (April 2013 latest data available!)

Worcester 1,475
Grafton 724
Westborough 759
Southborough 1,051
Ashland 691
Framingham 1,299
West Natick 1,121
Natick 1,077
Wellesley Square 804
Wellesley Hills 562
Wellesley Farms 558
Auburndale 325
West Newton 284
Newtonville 293

Commuter Rail Riders
Commuter Rail Riders

Waverly Street Commuter Lot - 65 Spaces

This is a very popular parking lot across the street from the MBTA station. Spaces are sold by permit only - costing $90 a month. New: All spot are full! Currently, there is a waiting list to get a parking spot.

Pearl Street Garage - 289 Spaces

Monthly permit parking, $65 for Framingham residences and $80 for non-residents. New: Monthly renewals are due no later than the Friday, a week prior to the first of each month. Example: renewal for September 2016 will need to be received no later that Friday, August 19, 2016.

Main MBTA Parking lot (Banana Lot) - 118 Spaces

MetroWest Regional Transit Authority(MWRTA) has signed a deal with the MBTA to take over the commuter rail parking lot. Terms of the deal have yet to be finalized but once completed they will take over full ownership of the parking lot. You?ll see new MWRTA bus shelters and expansion increasing the parking are to 200 spaces. Parking in this lot cost $4 a day.

July 3, 2016

Saint Bridget Church Flags

In the entrance room at the Saint Bridget Church in Framingham are three flags in a special built in corner display:

FlagsFramingham.jpg
Click on image for a larger version.

This is the message in the window of the display:

The flag on the right was made by the Sisters of Charity, Burlington, Vermont, 1917. It was presented to Chaplain M.J. O'Connor, 101st U.S. Infantry, and carried through World War I by that regiment. President Wilson lunched with officers of 26th Division at French Hospital in Montigny, Christmas 1918. This flag was draped on the back wall back of the President.

The flag on the left was the camp flag at Framingham when the 26th Division served there before going overseas.

May 21, 2016

New MBTA Framingham/Worcester Schedule

Heart To Hub

Monday is the start of the new MBTA schedule on the Worcester/Framingham line. The biggest change is the new "Heart to Hub" non-stop express from Worcester to Boston. The have been running promotions all over the Boston about how this will be the first time that people will be able to go from Worcester to Boston in about an hour.

The "Heart to Hub" starts at 8:05 each morning and arrives in Yawkey at 8:57. Which is great except that if you caught the 7:30 train from Worcester you would have arrived at Yawkey about 15 mins earlier. I am not sure how many people are going to want to catch the later train just to avoid the extra stops.

The other change is that p508 train (7am Worcester Departure) no longer stops at downtown Natick. The train now goes express from West Natick to Boston. This might be an issue because West Natick doesn't have a lot of available parking spaces. Many local businesses have made limited spots available for commuters. Many of the good locations are on waiting lists.

I updated the MBTA planner on this site. You can now easily tell when the next train is due to leave Framingham. In addition, the quick reference charts have been updated to when the trains depart Framingham station during peak hours.

Red Sox fans will want to catch the 5:40 (p590) or 6:01 (p524) train from Framingham to make it to the game!

May 14, 2016

Jordan’s Furniture Couches

A few weekends ago we said goodbye to a couple of our living room Couches. We have decided to replace some old Couches that we got from Bob's Discount Furniture to some nice ones from Jordan's Furniture. We bought the love seat rocker couch in 2003, and the bigger couch in 2005.

Old Couches

Both of the Couches were in fairly good condition. One problem was that the Sofa couch foot rest handle broke. As a result, this means that we were unable to use the footrest in one of the seats. In the love seat rocker, the plastic between the two seats had small cracks in them. We have two cats, and they didn't do any damage to the Couches. Instead of the donating the Couches, we gave them to a co-worker who was looking for Couches for their basement.

New Couches

The new Couches from Jordan's are very comfortable. They have power footrests, which will make it easy to put up the footrest whenever we need to. In addition, we won't encounter the same issue as the last Couch, the handle probably broke because of the constant use.

The only thing that the new Couch doesn't have is the pull-down table in the center of the sofa. We used this feature a lot to store TV remotes, drinks and assorted books and things. When we were looking at Couches, it seems that the center table isn't a choice anymore. All the manufacturers have removed it, or replaced it with a smaller table that doesn't function well enough to consider.

At some point, we will search for a sofa table as a replacement. This might be challenging because underneath the couch is a metal bar, and it will be difficult to side a table bottom underneath.

Shopping Experience

We had a good shopping experience at Jordan's in Natick. The process was very simple, and they answered all the questions that we had about the new couch. We are disappointed that they are changing out the Mardi Gras theme in the main entrance way. It was a fun area where kids can watch the show and look forward to visiting the store.

One of the things that we should have done is measure the existing Couches before going out shopping. That way we would have known if the new Couches were bigger or smaller than the existing ones.

We ended up getting a Love Seat and a Sofa. We felt got a great deal on them. Later we discovered that they were cheaper than anything similar that Bobs had to offer.

May 7, 2016

Saint Bridget School Auction

Saint Bridget School Logo

The Annual Saint Bridget School Auction is underway and this year there are 90 items are up for Bid!

Some of the notable items:
  • 8th Grade Graduation Front Row Seats
  • Red Sox Pavilion Club Seats
  • Duck Boat Tours
  • A Summer Vacation Week on Cape Cod! Walk to the beach!
  • Two Weeks at Camp Cody in New Hampshire

You may bid on as many items as you want. Bidding ends at 5pm on Friday, May 13, 2016. Once bidding closes, those bidders with the highest bid will be automatically notified via email. You will then be prompted to pay for your item via PayPal. If you would prefer to pay by cash or check please email Jenn Ryan to make arrangements for payment.

All paid items can be picked up at the school during the Murder Mystery Dinner and Auction on May 14th. If you've paid for your item and would prefer for us to send it home in your child's backpack, simply email Jenn Ryan to coordinate. If you are not a Saint Bridget School Family and have won an item, please send Jenn an email and we will make arrangements with you to have your item shipped or picked up.

Check out the Bidding Page!

May 3, 2016

Happy 70th Birthday La Cantina

Every now and again we seek for some good Italian food. This is challenging when you have to eat Gluten-Free as many fine Italian restaurants don?t have much to offer.

La Cantina in Framingham does offer a good selection of Gluten Free foods, include a tasty Gluten Free Pizza that my daughter loves to eat every time we eat in or use their take out. It's a 10? Gluten Free thin Crust pizza, a perfect size for one person. When my daughter orders it, we have some leftover for her to enjoy another time.

La Cantina

My daughter is also into Mac & Cheese. Do you know of a 5-year-old doesn?t want to eat that every day? At La Cantina, a good alternative is the Alfredo Gluten-Free penne. She tells me at its the best Mac & Cheese treat when she eats out. She likes it that she has a choice between yummy Pizza and Mac & Cheese.

Other dishes that can be made Gluten-free include: Chopped Sirloin, Veal Cacciatore, Veal Saltimbocca, Baked Penne Parmigiana, Penne Oil Garlic & Broccoli, Pasta Deyve, Grill Chicken Tenders, Roast half Chicken, Seafood Saute, Risotto con Frutti di Mare,

Today is the 70th birthday of La Cantina. It opened it?s doors back in 1946. Back then, Waverly Street was a busy Italian district with restaurants and grocery stores. They have a special roll back menu for today, unfortunately, they are not offering any gluten free dishes.

Check out the menu that I posted on July 22, 2008. The day after our first visit to La Cantina.

La Cantina is located at 911 Waverly Street in Framingham Massachusetts. You can reach them at (508) 879-7874.

April 23, 2016

Trash Day

This is a big spring cleaning weekend. With some coordination with our neighbors, we got a dumpster for the next couple of weeks. We got our 10 yard dumpster from Need One Dumpster Service. It's going to cost us about $100 each, we may have to pay more if we exceed the base weight.

Trash Day

We are going to use this opportunity to clean out some moldy furniture in the basement and some other things around the house.

There are some limits to what we can throw out, based on the prohibited Items list:

  • Hazardous
  • Toxic
  • Biohazard/medical waste
  • Asbestos
  • Solvents
  • Liquids
  • Liquid Paints
  • Chemicals

Some things that we learned:

They charged $35 for a Mattress, but we learned that the Framingham Recycle center will accept an infant mattress for no charge. So if you looking to dispose of an infant mattress, check your local dump to see you can throw it away for no cost.

They don't accept yard waste, which is too bad since we had some yard brush that we wanted to get rid of. You can get a separate dumpster that would accept yard waste, but we wouldn't have enough to justify getting a separate dumpster.

One of the walls of the 10 Yard Dumpster at Need One Dumpster Service opens, which allows you to walk into the dumpster. This makes loading a lot easier.

So Far, So Good

I would highly recommend teaming up with a neighbor or two and renting out a dumpster for a week. It might cost a bit of money in the short run, but a nice clean house helps everyone. Just make sure to know how much stuff you need to get rid of.

Remember, a lot of things can be donated for a tax write-off.

April 16, 2016

No More Plastic Bags - Coming to Framingham?

Framingham Parking

Framingham may soon be joining Newton, Brookline, and Cambridge in banning the use of plastic bags in all retail stores. Framingham resident Ken Weiss has filed a petition to have the town vote on that matter at the 2016 Town Meeting. The Town Meeting starts on April 26.

There are 49 warrents on the 2016 Annual Town Meeting, 8 of which are citizen petitions. Some other notable petitions:

  • Repeal Sex Offender ByLaw
  • Amend Handicapped Parking Rules
  • Reducing the number of "job searches" that a veteran receiving ch. 115 assistance must conduct in a week from 10 to 3.
  • Authorizing a research committee to review plans to establish a Women Veterans' Memorial.

Water Bottle Ban in 2014

In 2014, at a Framingham Special Town Meeting, residents were asked to vote on ban the sale of non-sparkling, single-use bottles of water made with the chemical PET. This petition was submitted by Framingham High School senior Matt D'Amico.

The Water Bottle ban petition lost with 40 in favor, and 60 opposed.

Town Meeting Proceedures

Any Framingham resident can sponsor an article for the yearly Town Meeting, they simply need the signature of 10 other residences. In a special Town Meeting, 100 signatures are required.

At the Town Meeting, the sponsor makes a presentation of up to 10 minutes, describing the purpose of the motion. After the presentation, the Moderator will ask for reports from the committees. Then the Moderator lets the public speak on the motion.

It can get a bit tricky because a Town Meeting Member may move that the article is referred back to a committee for more study or make a motion to "move the question." A "move the question" motion is voted upon immediately, and, if passed, the discussion terminates.

There are 68,300 residents that live in Framingham, the largest town population in Massachusetts.