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Interesting facts about the Red Line

March 23, 2012
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It’s been quite a ride

■When it opened, the Red Line had the longest subway cars in the world (69 feet, 2 inches).

■Estimated 204,000 people rode on the first day.

■Deepest station is Porter Square at 105 feet below ground.

■In 1948, Red Line trains were outfitted with upholstered chairs, fluorescent lights, and polka-dot curtains.

■First person to board at Harvard Square station was “a hardy Scot’’ named David J. Hunter, who waited all night, standing quietly and smoking cigars while waiting for the train. “The moment the gate was opened, he was away like a race horse, and before anyone realized it he had reached the ticket window and purchased the first ticket for Harvard Square,’’ the Globe reported. “He had been up all night that he might obtain this coveted honor.’’

■Red Line named after Harvard’s color, crimson, in August 1965 - on the day the MBTA unveiled its new logo, a T with a circle around it.

■Director Martin Scorsese drew ire when he depicted characters in 2006’s “The Departed’’ using cellphones on the Red Line between Park Street and South Station, a stretch of the line notorious at the time for its lack of cellphone service.

MARTINE POWERS

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