Sharon (MBTA)

Alrighty, now for a middle of nowhere MBTA station!

Helvetica bold in a small stereotypical New England town?!

Going to the station is easy and accessible. Your options for getting to the platforms are either the stairs on the overpass from Depot St., or ramps winding down from the nearby side streets. Mini-highs are found on the southern end of the platforms. Parking here is plenty, however there’s more ridership than spaces, which would suggest over half the people using this station (mostly in the morning and evening commutes) are coming in either by bike, being dropped off, or simply walking. The mini-high (yet again!) is pretty much the same as Mansfield’s, as both stations were rebuilt at similar times (2014 for Sharon due to an ADA complaint, 2017-2019 for Mansfield). Hell, had I written this before 2014, I’d be slamming the crap out of Sharon over being a very busy and very inaccessible station (only one on the line that wasn’t ADA compliant!) This was also the same time that the station building (which was closed, as I was here on a Saturday) was retrofitted to be ADA compliant as well.

Not much of a sign that there’s an MBTA station here!
The ADA parking on one side, along with the station building
More parking!
Southbound to Wickford
Oh, hi there, Amtrak!
And a northbound MBTA train!
The mini-high

The good: This station gets a lot of ridership. Enough so to where I’d make the argument that all trains (including morning expresses, which seem to skip here) should stop, unless the two tracks makes it prohibitive. Where the ridership comes from, I don’t know, as there’s no transit and there’s not much in the way that the equivalent of 10% of Sharon’s entire population is coming from Sharon alone, plus the fact that there’s twice as many riders as there is parking.

The bad: Maybe there isn’t enough parking! Weekends, sure, it isn’t an issue. But, I’m sure if you add transit or more parking (if it’s even possible), then it wouldn’t be as big an issue. Also, the mini-high.

Nearby points of interest: Sharon’s town center is due east of here. Apparently they have a statue of a female Revolutionary War soldier as well, at the local library.

Transit connections: Commuter Rail (Providence Line)

Overall, I like this station for the charm it has being in the middle of nowhere. It’s in the middle of the woods, which I think makes for a decent backdrop for railfanning. Plus, the town center isn’t too far away. However, the ridership is probably too high for its own good given the lack of a full high platform. Plus, I’d argue ridership for this station is enough to merit some actual transit, even if by way of a GATRA mini-bus shuttle utilizing a Dial a Ride van.

Rating: 6.5/10

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