I suspect that for my remaining life expectancy the only NB/FR service to Boston will be by bus.
As I mentioned in some previous postings, the two cities (NB and FR) have been completely driving this thing, what is useful to the suburban communities around them has almost totally been neglected. For example, I suspect there are a number of people who live in Dartmouth, Acushnet, Freetown, and Fairhaven and work in the Boston area, who would be much better served by stations north of New Bedford than by having to commute into downtown to take the train.
As far as bringing tourists to New Bedford is concerned, just take a look at the last forty years of local history. They said the parking garage would encourage tourism (it didn't), they said running Route 18 through downtown would bring tourists (it didn't, but it made it quicker to get to the south end), they said spending millions on the historic district would bring tourists (did it?), they said the NOBSKA would bring tourists (it got scrapped), they said the conversion of the power plant to one of the numerous projects that has been floated for it would bring tourists (well, it brought a few consultants to look at the building, I guess you could call them tourists, they left afterwards).
Ever notice that the emphasis in New Bedford is on bringing people with money into the city as tourists, they don't want them to stay and live there - ever wonder why? (hint: people with money might have an effect on local politics or worse yet they might run for office).
New Bedford's biggest problem is New Bedford. Bringing the MBTA to town won't change that.