In 2001, a MassDOT highway design study proposed alternatives for this interchange that best improved traffic flow and safety, but would have required significant private property takings. This design study was suspended in September 2002, as many citizens, during the public meetings, expressed major concerns with the potential takings. To ensure a better process going forward, a new planning study was recommended in consultation with an advisory task force, which would take a fresh look at the interchange area - beginning with a clean slate and a renewed commitment to an open, comprehensive, and inclusive public process.
In September 2004, the MassDOT Office of Transportation Planning conducted that study working closely with an advisory task force that evaluated transportation issues at the I-93/I-95 Interchange in the Towns of Reading and Stoneham and the City of Woburn. The study began with the preparation of goals, objectives, and evaluation criteria; an analysis of noise measurements; and the identification of issues to be addressed. Short-term and long-term alternatives were developed, followed by the screening of each against four basic criteria - lessens congestion, improves safety, avoids takings, and provides local access. A detailed analysis of the remaining alternatives was conducted, leading to the creation of a recommended plan (See Final Report Recommendations Section).