The Department of Conservation and Recreation is commissioning an engineering design for the creation of the Clippership Connector, a proposed half-mile path along the Mystic River in Medford between Medford Square and Riverbend Park. A partnership between the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR), WalkMedford, the City of Medford, and the Mystic River Watershed Association, it will connect existing paths, resulting in a continuous 10-mile path that will provide a safe and scenic route between Medford, Arlington, Cambridge, Concord, and Somerville.
The $138,000 design is being funded by the City of Medford, the Lawrence and Lillian Solomon Foundation, and the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation. The City of Medford’s call for businesses to help fill a $23,000 funding gap was answered in its entirety by Wegmans, a supermarket chain that entered New England in 2011 and now has 4 stores operating in Massachusetts and 2 opening soon in Medford and Natick.
“We are grateful for the support of Wegmans and for their generosity in assisting with the funding of this important project,” said Mayor Stephanie M. Burke. “We are pleased to welcome them into our community and look forward to continuing our partnership in the future.”
Wegmans is scheduled to open in Medford at the site of the former Meadow Glen Mall in the late fall of 2017. “Wegmans is thrilled to be a part of the Medford Community,” said Store Manager Kevin Russell. “Supporting the City of Medford and this vital project is at the heart of our five core values: caring, high standards, respect, empowerment, and making a difference.”
The Clippership Connector was first identified as a missing link on the Mystic River Master Plan, developed by the DCR in 2009. The project has recently been championed and brought to the front of the project list by WalkMedford, a civic organization of Medford residents and is also a priority of the Medford Bicycle Commission.
The design and engineering of the new path is expected to be complete this fall. At this time the City of Medford, the DCR, and the Mystic River Watershed Association are pursuing opportunities to fund the construction of the path, which they hope can begin in the spring of 2018.