- Department of Conservation & Recreation
Media Contact for DCR and City of Medford Break Ground on Clippership Connector
Ilyse Wolberg, DCR Press Secretary
Medford — The Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) and the City of Medford today celebrated the groundbreaking of the Clippership Connector Greenway, a half-mile multi-use accessible waterfront path between Medford Square, the Andrew/McGlynn Schools and the city’s Riverbend Park.
The new trail is nearly a decade in the making and represents a partnership between the state, the city, local advocacy groups and private organizations. It will connect 10 miles of contiguous greenways through the Mystic River Reservation.
“DCR manages a vast trail network across the Commonwealth that provides communities with critical connections for economic opportunity, recreation, and environmentally friendly commuting,” said DCR Commissioner Brian Arrigo. “The Clippership Connector Greenway will build healthy communities by allowing them to walk, bike and run along a section of the Mystic River that, to date, has been blocked from public access.”
“Over the past three years, we made a concerted effort to create safe accessible routes for cyclists and pedestrians allowing for more environmentally friendly travel in and around Medford,” said Mayor Lungo-Koehn. “We have the opportunity to activate our riverfront space by connecting two of our more unique and desirable open spaces with this important connecting path project. Thank you to Mayor Stephanie Burke and her team for securing a DCR planning grant in 2016 to get this process started. We are thrilled to continue our work with DCR and our local partners to create this space for Medford residents and visitors to enjoy.”
The Mystic River Reservation is one of the original five reservations delineated by the Metropolitan Park Commission in 1893. Located in five communities, Boston, Arlington, Medford, Everett, Somerville, the reservation has undergone many initiatives to protect open space and to provide contiguous greenspaces, pedestrian and bicycle connections, and active recreation facilities. DCR has been working to implement the most recent master plan that was published in 2009. The Clippership Connector has been one of the more challenging aspects of the plan and the construction marks a milestone in its completion.
Since the project began in 2018, DCR has invested nearly $750,000 in the design and permitting of the Clippership Connector Greenway project. The construction is an additional $4 million investment funded through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). This project is a partnership between DCR, the City of Medford, the Mystic River Watershed Association, WalkMedford and the Solomon Foundation through the DCR Partnership Grant Program.
“I am so happy to see the opening of the Clippership Connector,” said Sen. Pat Jehlen. “We know the importance of having bike access as a sustainable mode of transportation as well improving our community with better access to incredible recreational spaces. This would not be possible without the hard work and support of community advocates and the City of Medford over many years and the investment in our public spaces from DCR.”
“The Clippership Connector truly connects our community - from Medford Square and the Senior Center, to the Mystic River, to schools and parks and, importantly, a whole bike network,” said Representative Christine P. Barber. “The result of a partnership between city and state partners, along with local advocates at Mystic River Watershed Association and WalkMedford, this multi-use path will help to address climate change and improve mobility and quality of life for people in Medford and beyond.”
In addition to maximizing opportunities for riverfront views for the community and increasing accessibility for people of all ages and abilities, the trail improve the habitat and ecology of the riverbank.
“The Clippership Connector will create more than 10 miles of contiguous paths along the Mystic River--making a safe and scenic route between Medford Square, Andrew/McGlynn Schools and Macdonald Park,” said Patrick Herron, Executive Director, Mystic River Watershed Association. “We are thrilled that this long-awaited project has broken ground, and can't wait to see all our neighbors out on the Mystic Greenways.”
DCR anticipates construction on the greenway to be completed by 2025.