Riverside - Neighborhood 7

Central Square commercial area

Riverside is a residential neighborhood located along the Charles River, which includes some of the oldest settled parts of Cambridge. Harvard Square and Central Square, both major commercial and transit centers, lie at either end of the neighborhood. Massachusetts Avenue, which connects the two squares, serves as the neighborhood’s retail. Smaller commercial areas exist along Putnam Avenue, Western Avenue and River Street. Much of Harvard University’s student housing is located in Riverside. Riverside is also home to some of Harvard’s academic facilities and the primary academic and administrative facility for Cambridge College.

Riverside Neighborhood Map 

Riverside Statistical Profile


Central Square Study

View the report and recommendations from the Central Square Planning Study, completed in 2012, on the "K2C2" web page:

Kendall Square Central Square Study (K2C2) Study

Western Avenue Reconstruction Project

Western Avenue is scheduled to be fully reconstructed work began in the Summer of 2012,and is expected to be completed by Fall 2014.  The underground stormwater and sewer system, roadway and sidewalks will all be replaced from Franklin Street to Memorial Drive.  View the design features and progress on the Western Avenue Reconstruction Project web page:

Western Avenue Reconstruction Project

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. School Construction Project

The Cambridge Public Schools’ Innovation Agenda will result in the creation of four new upper school campuses serving students in grades 6 to 8. The Martin Luther King Jr. School located at 100 Putnam Avenue, Cambridge, will be the first school to be redesigned to include a JK-5 Program, an Upper School Program, Community School and Afterschool programs. For information on the project see the web page:

Martin Luther King Jr. School Construction Project

The objective of a neighborhood study and subsequent updates is to identify planning issues in the neighborhood and articulate recommendations to address those issues. The study recommendations are the key part of the neighborhood study and updates. The recommendations are used not only to guide neighborhood planning efforts for the Community Development Department but in many cases are included as work items for other City departments when appropriate.

2001 Neighborhood Study

From 2001 to 2003 the Community Development Department completed a multidisciplinary study of the Riverside Neighborhood. This study looked broadly at neighborhood wide issues and more in depth at future development options for several key sites that were of paramount interest to the community at large:

1992 Neighborhood Study

The  original Riverside study occurred in 1992:

To request a printed copies of any neighborhood study please call Tracey Joyce in the Community Planning Division at 617/349-4650 or email her at tjoyce@cambridgema.gov

  • Clover at Riverside Park

    Water play at the new Riverside Park.

  • Kids playing at new Riversie Open Space

    Children enjoying the new Riverside park.

  • Switch House rehab to homeownership in Riverside.

    Switch House rehab to homeownership in Riverside.

  • Chess Playing in the Square

    Chess Playing in the Square

  • Corporal Burns Park – Flagg Street at Banks Street and Memorial Drive
  • Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. School Playground – Hayes Street and Magee Street
  • Franklin Street Park- Franklin Street between Bay Street and Hancock Street
  • Hoyt Field – Montague Street and Bancroft Street
  • New Riverside Park – Western Avenue at Memorial Drive
  • Riverside Press Park – River Street at Blackstone and Memorial Drive

Neighborhood Planner:

Elaine Thorne, ethorne@cambridgema.gov , 617/349-4648