Central Square

Central Square

About Central Square

Central Square serves as the traditional downtown for Cambridge, playing many roles as a vibrant, mixed-use district. It is central in many ways—it is the seat of City government, it is mid-way between Harvard to the west and MIT to the east, and it is surrounded by four dense, livable neighborhoods.

The character of Central Square changes along the length of Massachusetts Avenue, with a strong institutional presence at either end. At the heart of the Square, City Hall and the Lombardi Building form the center of Cambridge city government, with the City’s Senior Center across the street, adjacent to the YMCA. Nearby are the YWCA on Temple Street and offices for the Cambridge Housing Authority in the historic old police station building on Western Ave. Continuing eastward, in the block between Prospect and Pearl Street, Central Square Station is one of the busiest on the Red Line, complemented by bus stops for the many lines that link the Square to the broader region.

There are several mixed-use blocks between the Station and Lafayette Square at the intersection of Mass Ave and Main Street (also known as Jill Brown Rhone Park). Altogether, the Square features a vibrant arts and culture atmosphere created by its numerous ethnic restaurants, interesting shops, small offices, and diverse nightlife. In the daytime, there is a strong business presence in buildings throughout the length of the Square, with a mix of life science, technology, and other professional services.

Central Square Resources

Central Square Projects and Documents

Infrastructure Updates

For More Information

For more economic development information and activity in Central Square, please contact Pardis Saffari at psaffari@cambridgema.gov, or at 617/349-4654.

For more information on community planning activity in Central Square, please contact Drew Kane at dkane@cambridgema.gov, or at 617/349-9462 or Melissa Peters at mpeters@cambridgema.gov or 617-349-4605.