While most analyses of late-twentieth-century highway policy suggest a shift toward open system design, bottom-up federalism, and the devolution of transportation governance, the history of Boston’s Central Artery/Tunnel project, informally known as the “Big Dig,” runs counter to this trend. Though the project emerged in the 1970s during a time of unprecedented citizen activism in transportation planning, ultimately the privatization of political power proved to be the Big Dig’s most important legacy for twenty-first-century urban highway projects.
Fein, Michael R. "Tunnel Vision: 'Invisible' Highways and Boston’s 'Big Dig' in the Age of Privatization." Journal of Planning History 11, no. 1 (2012): 47-69. doi: 10.1177/1538513211425209.
Fein, Michael R., "Tunnel Vision: “Invisible” Highways and Boston’s “Big Dig” in the Age of Privatization" (2011). Humanities Department Faculty Publications & Research. Paper 33.