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street to Tremont street; a single track in Tremont street, from Dover street to Boylston street; double tracks in Tremont street, from Boylston street to the Granary Burial Ground.
This Company have the right, under the authority of the location granted by the Board of Aldermen, Aug. 6th, 1855, to lay down tracks as follows, viz:-two tracks in Tremont street, from the dividing line between Roxbury and Boston, to Dover street ; one track in Shawmut avenue, from the boundary line between Boston and Roxbury, to Dover street; one track in Springfield street from Washington to Tremont street; one track in Waltham street, from Washington to Tremont street.
The Committee on Paving, of the Board of Aldermen of 1856, on petition of the Metropolitan Railroad Co., reported an order of notice to abutters, to be heard in relation to granting said Company authority to lay down a single track in Washington street, from Boylston street to Cornhill ; in Cornhill, from Washington street to Court street; across Court street, in Tremont street, to the Granary Burial Ground. The order of notice was issued, and upon the day assigned for the hearing the subject was laid upon the table. The cars were run upon this road, to Boylston street, Sept. 17th, 1856, and to the Granary Burial Ground, Oct. 20th, 1856.
The Dorchester Avenue Railroad Co. have laid down a single track, with suitable turnouts, from the boundary line between Dorchester and Boston, in Dorchester avenue; across the North Free Bridge; in Federal street, to Broad street; in Broad street, terminating at State street. This Company have laid down all the track they have authority to. The cars have been run at intervals,
on this road, since the 12th of Dec., but not as yet regularly.
The Middlesex Railroad Company have laid down their track in Beverly street, commencing at Warren Bridge; thence across Causeway street; in Beverly street, to Charlestown street; in Charlestown street, to Causeway street; across Causeway street, to Charles River Bridge. This Company have authority to lay down a double track in Charlestown street, from the point where the tracks are now laid down in said street, across Haymarket square, to the northerly edgestone of the sidewalk on Merrimac street. This road extends through Charlestown to Somerville. The cars have not been run on this road. The rail laid down by the three above
mentioned Companies, is made of cast iron, and of altogether different pattern from that used by the Cambridge Railroad Co., and the horse railroad companies in New York, and is a great improvement upon that, as a street rail. The groove in the cast iron rail is not so deep as that of the wrought iron rail, of the Cambridge and New York railroads, and is a more easy one for the wheels of vehicles to pass over.
The new rail will undoubtedly be improved upon.
In laying down the rails, by the companies noticed above, a disposition has been shown to replace the pavement of the streets in which the tracks were laid, in a thorough manner, and they have all attended to the repairs along their respective routes, generally, in a prompt manner, with the exception of the Dorchester Avenue Railroad Co. They neglected the repairing of Broad street, which needed it very much, in many parts of the street, until so late a period in the season that it could not be done. The terms of the charters of the several companies require, that they shall keep in repair, at all times, so much of the street as is occupied by their tracks, which in the grant of location is set forth as all that is within the rails, and one foot and a half on the outside of each rail.
The tracks of the Cambridge Horse Railroad Co. were laid down in December, 1855, but owing to the lateness of the season the pavement was severely acted upon by the frost, and was in a bad condition early in the spring. As soon, however, as the weather permitted, it was put in
proper order by the company, and they have since continued to keep it so. The portions of Cambridge street, on each side of the track, from Chamber street to the West Boston Bridge, will need repaving the coming season; and if the government deem it advisable to prosecute the work, the railroad company will undoubtedly join with the city in having the street put in thorough repair. The rail laid down by this company, although the one expressly stipulated in the terms of location granted by the Board of Aldermen, has met with many expressions of dissatisfaction. The undersigned takes the liberty of suggesting, that if the Board of Aldermen propose any change in the form of rail used by this company, the time of the proposed relaying of the
pavement, the coming spring or summer, will be a favorable opportunity to make a change in the rail; and it could be done then, to better advantage by the company and with less hindrance to the travelling public, than at any other time. The cars were run upon this road April 14th, 1856.
The only other horse railroad which has been located in this city by the Board of Aldermen, is the Mount Washington Avenue Railroad. The location of the tracks of the Mount Washington Railroad Company commences on the southerly side of Kneeland street, at the Boston and Worcester Railroad Freight depot; thence in Kneeland street to Sea (now Federal) street; across Sea (Federal) street, to Mount Washington Avenue; in Mount Washington Avenue, to I street. No tracks have been laid down by this company; and the part of the Mount Washington Avenue between Granite street and I street, over which the location has been granted, has not been built.
The charter of the Chelsea Railroad Company was accepted by the City Council, Oct. 9th, 1854, with the proviso “ that such acceptance shall not be construed as fixing or locating any track within this city.” The route laid down in the charter of this company, in this city, is the same as that which has been granted to the Middlesex Railroad Company. There is provision in the charter of the Chelsea Company, that if any other railroad corporation shall obtain from the Mayor and Aldermen of the City of Boston, authority to lay down a track or tracks upon the streets between the Charlestown bridges and Haymarket Square, before the like authority shall have been obtained by this corporation, then so much of the act “as authorizes the corporation hereby created, to lay a track or tracks in said streets, shall be void.” The Chelsea Company have the right to enter upon and use the tracks granted to the Middlesex Railroad Company.
The charter of the Broadway Railroad Company was accepted Dec. 27th, 1856. This Company has authority to lay down tracks in the streets of South Boston, whenever the location is granted by the Board of Aldermen, and to join the Dorchester Avenue Railroad at the junction of Broadway and Dorchester avenue.
The subject of rules and regulations to govern the running of the cars on horse railroads, came before the City Council of last year, at a late period, and was not reported upon by the Committee on Ordinances. It will undoubtedly meet the early attention of the pres ent government. In this connection, the question will of course be duly considered whether the several companies, when there is sufficient snow on the ground to make good sleighing, should not run sleighs instead of cars, which would obviate the necessity of clearing off that portion of the streets occupied by tracks.
Complaints have been made, and justly, too, of the dangerous condition of granite block sidewalks, during the winter season. In some portions of the city, more particularly on the corners of important thoroughfares, where the granite has worn smooth, it is difficult, and at times dangerous, for pedestrians to pass over the walk, when the stone is full of frost, and snow is on the ground. The most effectual safeguard against accidents, is to cover the kind of sidewalks in question with boards, as has been done in many instances.
The subjects of the injury done to paved streets, by the bad manner in which the paving stones are replaced