1. Keolis confirmed in recent tweets and a post on Reddit that the schedule changes will be implemented on May 23. I had heard rumors that they might be delayed, but the recent statements seem very definitive. Quote from Keolis on Reddit:
"The schedules will be effective May 23rd. The final schedules are expected to be released by mid-April online and will be displayed in the three Boston stations. They’re being rolled out online first to make sure that the information goes out to the public as quickly as possible so everyone can plan their commutes. The familiar paper schedules will be printed and available to customers in stations one week before the schedules are set to become effective. The Commuter Rail schedule has not experienced a level of change like this before so we recognize we have a big job ahead of us to disseminate this information to our customers. Signage will need to be swapped out at nearly 140 stations. GTFS on the various mobile apps must be updated. This will be an all hands on deck effort, and we will do our best to limit any hiccups as passengers and crews adjust to new schedules together. - RC"
And from Twitter:
"The 'bullet' train which will run express from Worcester to Yawkey is definitely incorporated in the May 23rd schedule change. - RM"
3. All peak service trains will stop at West Natick. This addresses the one issue that I heard the most about from all of you - the removal of the West Natick stop from the outbound 5 PM express train. Clearly that is restored on the final version of the new schedule, but it also appears that the West Natick stop is restored to the popular ~7:45 AM inbound P508 train. This tidbit is from a presentation made to the FMCB (Financial Management and Control Board) on March 16. The presentation highlighted the results of the feedback sessions from the winter. Here is the relevant page from that presentation: