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Keller @ Large: Stephanie Pollack Talks Green Line Extension Project

BOSTON (CBS) -- Despite her comments that there were lingering risks with the Green Line extension project--including a lack of funding and management capacity--state transportation secretary Stephanie Pollack said this project wouldn't end up like the Big Dig.

"I think there is a difference, because I think we're going into this project now very aware that we have to organize it so those things don't happen," said Pollack. "We spent a lot of time during the look back process deconstructing all the mistakes that were made in management and procurement [for] the first version of the Green Line extension and I think we actually have some good plans in place."

More: Keller @ Large: Green Line Extension Has Major Risks

Pollack sat down with WBZ political analyst Jon Keller to discuss the fate of the Green Line extension project, a scaled-down version of which was approved on Monday by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation board. Pollack maintained that the project would stay under control and not divert the MBTA's attention from it's main priority.

"It's a matter of discipline, and remembering that our number-one priority is actually great service for the million people who already use the T every day, and while this project is important, nothing is more important than that," said Pollack.

Pollack downplayed the chances of the federal government pulling out of the plan due to the risks involved.

"I think we did a good job of redesigning the project so it captures the benefits that the federal government is paying for," said Pollack. "But they'll also be looking at, 'did we get the cost right?' and 'does the T have the management capacity to deliver the project?'"

Keller and Pollack also discussed the final cost of the project, and the status of privatization of MBTA contracts.

You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.

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