Whereas a lot of the neighborhoods on the southern end of Cambridge are full of office buildings, labs, and businesses, Cambridgeport is mainly residential. This neighborhood is full of triple decker homes and offers quiet living throughout the majority of the neighborhood. However, as you get closer to MIT on the east side of the neighborhood, more office buildings pop up and the busier side of Cambridgeport emerges.
Most people who live in this neighborhood are likely attracted more to the quiet residential side of Cambridgeport than the busy commercial side (East Cambridge and Kendall Square are more suitable for those who want the constant hustle and bustle). The streets are lined with trees and other greenery and the rows of Victorian homes are a far cry from the apartment and condo buildings that most people live in throughout southeast Cambridge.
The people who live in this neighborhood are still primarily white-collar who likely work in the commercial area just east of the neighborhood or perhaps in Boston itself. The neighborhood is also dominated by renters as they account for 64% of the people who live in Cambridgeport. It is a “family friendly” neighborhood that is a great compromise for those who like a bit of everything in their neighborhood.
The land where the neighborhood currently resides used to be full of wide open fields and salt marshes. Agriculture used to be huge in this area, but as bridges and transportation increased to and from Boston, the neighborhood changed. Residential areas and streets began to pop up and industrial development picked up as well with the creation of the railroad.
Throughout the 19th century, the construction of the residential areas of the neighborhood was fast-paced. There was a lot of demand for homes in the area, so it became more of a residential neighborhood than a manufacturing neighborhood. It has maintained that persona into the present as well.
While the rent and cost of living is a bit cheaper than places like Kendall Square, Cambridgeport can cost you a pretty penny when it comes to rental costs. The overall cost of living is about average. The proximity to MIT mixed with the quiet living are likely a few of the reasons why this neighborhood is so pricey.
Because of the mix of quiet and busy areas of the neighborhood, getting around will vary depending on where you live, work, and travel to. If you live near the northern or western sides of the neighborhood, there is a good chance you’ll have a car (in fact, nearly 70% of households in this neighborhood have a car).
However, if you don’t, there is no need to worry. The neighborhood is very easy to walk and bike through as long as the weather isn’t extreme. While there are no bike lanes like some places have, you can still bike safely by obeying the traffic rules.
Like most neighborhoods in the area, public transit is the most popular way for locals to get around. It is convenient with numerous subway and bus stops throughout and near the neighborhood. It is also more cost effective than taking a taxi around every day or buying a car.
- Boston University
- Harvard Business School
- Fort Washington Park is the home of the oldest surviving fortification from the American Civil War. It is has been a recognized historic site for decades and now features several grassy embankments.
- Magazine Beach Park is a fifteen-acre park located along the Charles River along the southwest border of the neighborhood. It features a pool, several sports fields, a ton of green space, picnic areas and more. It is a great place to go spend some quality time with friends and family.
- The campus of MIT is a stone throw away from this neighborhood and is worth a visit. The campus not only looks appealing but is home to some of the brightest minds on the planet and they are always doing some neat things there.
The F.A Kennedy Steam Bakery is a historic bakery located in Cambridgeport. This bakery was built in 1875 and is world famous for being the first place to ever create the Fig Newton, in 1891.
While technology is king in Cambridge, arts and culture still exist there too. One of the best places to check out cool art in the neighborhood is at Gallery 263. This gallery features art from local and regional up and comers and also offers things like music and yoga.