The Home Stretch

After nine months of long walks, short walks, blue marker, and Instagram posts, I have walked 93% of Cambridge. It’s strange to think that I’ll be done soon and will have to use different criteria to plan my recreational walks! I did the NW Cambridge walk that I saved to do with a friend who lives there. I got the Hubbard St. “Oops.” I put off Agassiz as long as I could.

To make sure I cover everything I need to cover, I have divided my remaining turf into eight walks. Some of these will be doubled up, and the nature of the “Oops” walk means it could be further divided, but for the sake of organization, here they are:

A neighborhood I avoided because it reminds me too much of my stressful grad school days at Lesley! Although Crescent St. will be a nice reminder of School of HONK Halloween parades past. I’ve also put this one off because there’s no way to do a loop. It’ll be a “weave,” since Mass Ave and Oxford St. are both done, so it’ll be a long walk back to the beginning. Yes yes, I know, the point is doing long walks. But this layout still deterred me!

  • Prentiss Street 02140
  • Crescent Street 02138
  • Sacramento Place 02138
  • Sacramento Street 02138
  • Wendell Street 02138
  • Exeter Park 02140
  • Forest Street 02140
  • Frost Street 02140
  • Frost Terrace 02140
  • Newport Road 02140

Neighborhood Nine
I promise I won’t stalk Elizabeth Warren! I will keep an eye out for her dog, though.

  • Agassiz Street 02140
  • Avon Place 02140
  • Bates Street 02140
  • Humboldt Street 02140
  • Lancaster Street 02140
  • Walnut Avenue 02140
  • Washington Avenue 02140

The biggest “bang for buck” walk that’s left in terms of numbers of streets!

  • Banks Street 02138
  • Elmer Street 02138
  • Hingham Street 02138
  • Ballord Place 02139
  • Bancroft Street 02139
  • Blackstone Street 02139
  • Callender Street 02139
  • Dodge Street 02139
  • Gilmore Street 02139
  • Hews Street 02139
  • Putnam Avenue 02139
  • Riverside Place 02139
  • Western Avenue 02139

Not all of these are near Alewife, but the walk includes Alewife Brook Parkway. I’ll make a final decision on how much of Route 2 I want to include.

  • Alewife Brook Pkwy 02138
  • Concord Avenue 02138
  • Concord Lane 02138
  • Fawcett Street 02138
  • Granville Road 02138
  • Saville Street 02138
  • Terminal Road 02138
  • Wheeler Street 02138
  • Alewife Brook Pkwy 02140

These are streets I walked one hot summer night, and later decided that walks after dark didn’t count. However, I had to reverse that rule in November when walks before dark were mostly impossible. I could go either way on these (count or redo), but have a few bonus streets I added to this walk anyway since they’re nearby, so I might as well trod them all again.

  • Allen Street 02140
  • Beech Street 02140
  • Blake Street 02140
  • Davenport Street 02140
  • Elm Street 02140
  • Miller Avenue 02140
  • Orchard Street 02140
  • Porter Circle 02140 (not redo)
  • Porter Park 02140 (not redo)
  • Porter Road 02140 (not redo)
  • Saginaw Avenue 02140
  • Tenney Street 02140
  • Creighton Street 02140 (not redo)
  • Hadley Street 02140 (not redo)

These streets were not on any of my lists nor are they on my map. However, Google Maps shows them clear as day.

  • Brickworks Driveway
  • Clifton Circle
  • Clifton Place
  • Jackson Circle 02140
  • Jackson Place 02140
  • Jackson Street 02140
  • Jefferson Park 02140

Most of this walk is strictly “oops,” i.e. careless mistakes in the field that result in an 1/8 inch of a map road being bare. Since these areas are all over the place, this “walk” will be mostly a drive, making many stops. Honorary, non-oops members of this walk include (1) places where a road was impassable due to construction many months ago but may be all set now; (2) roads I must have done but probably forgot to log (or remove if they don’t exist), just in case; (3) roads that border other towns where I thought I went far enough but may not have.

  • Muller Avenue 02140 (Oops)
  • Rice Circle 02140 (Thought I did it)
  • Morgan Ave (Construction)
  • Water Street 02141 (Construction)
  • Deacon Street 02142 (Construction)
  • Dock Street 02142 (Construction)
  • Hayward Street 02142 (Construction)
  • Camden Place 02138 (Thought I did it)
  • Coolidge Avenue 02138 (Did I go far enough?)
  • Flanders Rd. (Does it exist?)
  • Garden Court 02138 (Does it exist?)
  • Greenough Boulevard 02138 (Did I go far enough?)
  • Harold Place 02139 (Does it exist?)
  • Princeton Avenue 02139 (Oops)
  • Alewife Center 02140 (Does it exist?)

The Grand Finale
Pretty early on, I had the idea to invite the Cambridge City Council to complete the final walk with me. Maybe Mayor Siddiqui will even sign my map. I had this idea too late to save the bit of Mass Ave directly in front of City Hall for them, but saved the closest available chunk I had at the moment for the final pavement-beating of this project. Even if they don’t accept my invitation, ending at City Hall will feel momentous.

  • Soden Place 02139
  • Soden Street 02139
  • Western Avenue 02139

I’ll admit that I find the proximity to completion incredibly exciting; that wrapping up my Pandemic Project is mere days away. I’ll save the true sentimentality for my final write-up, but I’ll allow my excitement to bubble through. I can’t relax yet though, there are still some calls to make. Even though the remaining streets are nicely divided into eight walks, the spreadsheet is still complicated. Google thinks it’s “St. John’s St.” Fitbit thinks it’s “St. John’s St. Extension.” Which is it? Does the Somerville Elm St. go into Cambridge, too? There are several examples of questions and discrepancies like this whose verdicts I put off until the end. Well, it’s the end. Time to examine a few more maps!

P.S. The map was in danger of ripping entirely into several pieces, so I did some surgery over the weekend, patching holes and scotch-taping seams. It doesn’t fold so well, but it’ll stay together for as long as it has to!


One thought on “The Home Stretch

  1. What a great project to take on during the pandemic! Cambridge has an impressive number of streets. Do you know how many miles of streets there are?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: