Bus Stops, Shelters, Benches, and Amenities

Cemusa bus shelter on Concord Avenue at the playing fields behind the armory.

There are over 250 bus stops on Cambridge's streets. We work with the MBTA to make sure that every bus stop accessible, safe, convenient, comfortable, and close to destinations.  You can learn more below about the amenities we place at bus stops and changes to city streets that make buses better.

Bus shelters

We place bus shelters at many of the busiest bus stops in Cambridge. The City, the MBTA, or private entities own the bus shelters in Cambridge. The shelters provide shade and protection from wind and precipitation. We provide shelters to encourage people to use buses to get around the city. We have several types of bus shelters. Learn more below.

Advertising shelters

Advertising shelters have an advertising panel with lighting, seats, and bus route information. The MBTA and their contractor installs and maintains shelters. MBTA's contractor sells advertisements in the shelters. These advertising sales fund maintenance, cleaning, and repair of the shelters. They also fund the salary of workers.

The City leads a process to identify new shelter installations. We consider many factors. This includes:

  • the available space on the sidewalk
  • number of boardings
  • nearby destinations like senior housing facilities, hospitals, and city facilities
We may consider other locations where a shelter would be beneficial to riders or neighborhood characteristics, like, presence of environmental justice populations. We are not currently installing new shelters


Click the links below to see images of advertising shelters at the following bus stop locations. A new window will open when you click the following links:

Shelters without advertising panels

The City, the MBTA, and private entities also own and maintain bus other shelters. These shelters have a wind screen and seats. They may also have bus route information. We install these other shelters throughout the city. We sometimes require developers to install shelters as mitigation for their development proposals. We also install these shelters when an advertising shelter is not workable at a bus stop.

Click here for map of the current location of shelters in the City.

Realtime information signs at bus stops

The City and the MBTA have installed electronic bus arrival prediction signs at on-street bus stops. We have installed TransitScreen signs at many city-owned buildings. We often require that developers install these signs in their buildings. The MBTA also has several LED and electronic paper signs at bus stops. We also ran a pilot project to test new electronic paper and LED signs at bus stops. We are planning to install additional LED or electronic paper signs based on what we learned from the pilot project. You can read more information about these signs below.

TransitScreen transportation signs

The City of Cambridge has TransitScreens signs at several city-owned buildings, including: City Hall, City Hall Annex, and the Citywide Senior Center. We are not looking to install more TransitScreens. 

MBTA real-time signs

The MBTA has installed signage at several locations. These signs are on the street and provide riders information about bus arrivals and service alerts. You can see these signs at:

  • Red Line Central station - Main inbound entrance - LED screen signage
  • Dawes Island - Mass Ave at Garden Street - electronic paper solar-powered signage
  • Eliot Street - Brattle Square - electronic paper solar-powered signage

Bus stop benches

Benches provide a place to sit while waiting for the bus. The City's standard bench is about six-feet long. This allows up to 3 people to sit. When we rebuild streets, we will install standard or artistic benches. 

You can see recent bench installations at the following locations::

Better and more spacious bus stops

In June 2017, the City constructed a curb extension and added a bus shelter at the bus stop on Green Street at Pearl Street, increasing space and comfort for waiting passengers and pedestrians. In order to minimize the impact on parking, parking on Green Street between Pearl Street and Brookline Street has been permanently shifted to the north side of the street. For more background information, please view the project flyerpresentationposter, and notes from a meeting in 2016.

Bus routing and bus stop location changes

The City works with the MBTA on an ongoing basis to modify bus stop locations and routing to improve travel times, service reliability, and traffic safety. Recent changes include:

Acorn Park Drive routing and new bus stop near Alewife:

MBTA bus routes 62, 67, and 76 to Alewife Station no longer travel on Route 2 from Arlington to Cambridge. Instead, they travel via Acorn Park Drive and serve a new bus stop and shelter on Acorn Park Drive. This change also allows buses to avoid traffic on Route 2 during rush hours. This estimated travel times savings in the morning rush hour of just under 2 minutes per trip, adding up to 21.6 person-hours on an average weekday. For more information, please view a press release from the MBTA.

Broadway at Galileo Galilei Way bus stop

We moved the bus stop for eastbound buses on Broadway at Galileo Galileli Way to after the intersection. We heard many requests from the community and MBTA bus operators to make this change. This change improves travel time for bus riders, traffic safety for all street users, and operations for bus drivers. The City generally prefers placing a bus stop after the intersection because of these benefits. 

Ames Street at Broadway and Main Street.

The CT2 bus route no longer directly serves the Kendall/MIT station entrances on Main Street. Instead, the CT2 travels on Ames Street serving two bus stops. We made this change because most CT2 bus riders in the Kendall Square area do not connect to the Red Line. This change also improved travel time for bus riders because buses would travel shorter distances and make fewer turns to travel through the square. 

Better street designs for bus stops

Cambridge's design standard is to extend the sidewalk into the parking lane at bus stops. This means that buses stop in the travel lane next to the extended sidewalk at the bus stop. As streets are rebuilt, we will design the street so that bus stops have extended sidewalks.

Though the current standard is to extend the sidewalk, you will see bus stops that use an older design. These bus stops are where buses must pull into the parking/curb lane next to the sidewalk or in a designated "pull out". These street designs mean that buses often get delayed re-entering traffic after bus riders enter and exit. This design means that motorists may also block buses attempting to stop to board or alight riders. Even when clear of motorists, bus drivers cannot always get both front and rear doors next to the sidewalk. Without the bus doors at the sidewalk, people with disabilities will experience barriers to their travel. That is, for some people with disabilities, a a large gap from the bus to the curb means that they cannot board or exit the bus or risk injuries.

Maintenance, repair, and snow clearance

The City works with contractors, the MBTA, and other entities for regular maintenance and repair of shelters and bus stops. Snow clearance is, similarly, a coordinated effort. If you see a bus stop that needs maintenance, repair, cleaning, or snow clearance, submit a request on Commonwealth Connect.

For more information

For more information, please contact Andrew Reker. You may send an e-mail to areker@cambridgema.gov or 617-349-6959