Standing on the banks of the Malden River below the famous Anthony’s restaurant – where the river pokes its head out of a long, dark culvert, it’s intriguing to imagine what downtown Malden might look like if the river was exhumed from the culvert it is constrained in. A ribbon of blue and green connecting shops and residents in this dense downtown would be like a shot of adrenaline – drawing people and new businesses to the riverfront. If you listen carefully at select street drains, the Malden River can be heard flowing under roads, buildings and sidewalks – a constant reminder that the river is there and ready to be shown the light of day.
Urban river restoration presents some of the best (but technically challenging) opportunities for downtown revival. In North Adams an exciting partnership is working to restore the main stem and north branch of the Hoosic River, sections of both have been confined in a concrete flood chute since the 1950s. Innovative ideas to naturalize the river but also protect against catastrophic floods are underway – with the end goal of revitalizing this Berkshire mill town and improving ecological conditions.
Gateway Cities like Fitchburg and Lawrence are making tremendous strides to revitalize their rivers using greenways and riverside parks to link neighborhoods. The Steamline Trail in Fitchburg adeptly integrates industrial architecture and new open spaces- while all along providing glorious views of the ever improving North Nashua River.
Forty years ago river advocates like Marion Stoddart knew urban waterways would, once again, be the shimmering centerpieces of our cites if we continued to improve them. Thanks to their foresight and hard work urban rivers like the Spicket, Malden, Nashua, Neponset and Hoosic are being rediscovered and embraced.
Calling All Insect-Loving Volunteers! posted on Jul 30
I always thought wasps were the bad guys growing up. But smokey-winged beetle bandit wasps (Cerceris fumipennis) are actually the good guys – used to kill off an invasive species. This specific type of wasp (that does not sting) catches Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), a …Continue Reading Calling All Insect-Loving Volunteers!
A Whale of a License Plate posted on Jul 28
Wish your license plate was more identifiable? Want to save whales? Well, there is a way to achieve both of these at once. Perhaps the old saying about hitting two birds with one stone should be “do two cool things with one easy payment to the …Continue Reading A Whale of a License Plate
Before the Boston Seafood Festival, Reconsider the Lobster posted on Jul 23
Everything that you have been told about lobsters is a lie. Okay, maybe not everything. But despite the popularity of the lobster industry (and it’s a very popular industry—bringing in over $53 million dollars in Massachusetts alone), many popular beliefs about the lobster’s existence are …Continue Reading Before the Boston Seafood Festival, Reconsider the Lobster