As mentioned in the introduction, this neighborhood is often called the most innovative square mile in the world. While it may be a minuscule neighborhood, the things companies are doing there are massive. At every corner, there seems to be a tech company hoping to be the next big thing and the neighborhood is home to the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Numerous big companies such as Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, HubSpot, and Microsoft have offices in this neighborhood, which is a testament to its influence and importance in the tech industries. As you would expect with a large number of laboratories and tech start-ups and businesses in the area, it’s home to many intellectual individuals. However, there is more to the neighborhood than luxury apartments, tech companies, and MIT. In fact, the way the neighborhood is constructed is a nice mix of buildings, green space, and culture.
Many of the office buildings in the area are connected and linked together by open space which features plazas and a lot of green space. The plaza regularly features concerts and markets, while the green space is great for relaxing with friends and family or simply taking a nice walk. The complex also features a massive skating rink that is open 7 days a week. Kendall Square does a good job of adding culture and art into the predominantly technological focus of Kendall Square.
So while it is still very much a technological and business focused neighborhood, there is more to it than meets the eye. It’s a great place for young families or individuals alone, even if they aren’t interested in technology. In fact, the average household size of this neighborhood is 2.6 people, which means there are a fair amount of families residing here.
Before it ever became the technology powerhouse that it is today, Kendall Square used to be a salt marsh. After some bridges were built and a landfill was used to transform the topography of the neighborhood, it became a very important hub for transportation. In the 19th and early 20th centuries, the neighborhood was a major industrial center. There were power plants and a number of different factories in the area. Included in this was the Kendall Boiler and Tank Company, which is what the neighborhood is named after.
However, in the mid to late 20th century, the neighborhood began to pivot away from its industrial heritage. Office buildings, labs, and residential buildings began to pop up and changed the identity of this neighborhood. This has continued in recent years as well over 100 tech companies call this neighborhood home.
With all of those companies setting up shop in this neighborhood, the people who work there need somewhere to live. As a result, numerous different high-rise residential buildings have been constructed. However, if you want to live amongst all the innovation of this neighborhood, it comes with a price. The rent in this neighborhood and others like it has been on the rise dramatically in the past few years. Just since last year, the rent in this neighborhood has risen over 16%, which is around four times the average in Boston.
The preferred way for most to get around in Kendall Square is likely taking the subway. Driving is an option but the one-way roads and other confusing roads of Kendall Square can get you lost with one wrong turn. Subways are a cheaper alternative and extremely easy to get access to as the Red Line makes a stop directly in the square throughout the day.
While the neighborhood is beautiful to take walks in, walking isn’t exactly a practical way to always have to travel. However, if you only have a short commute and the weather is nice, walking along the rows of tech companies and high rise buildings isn’t so bad.
- The Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- Harvard University
- Northeastern University
- The Strata Center is an academic complex over 700,000 square feet large. It is without one of the most unique and abstractly designed buildings on the planet. It looks unlike anything you have ever seen before and you should definitely check it out.
- Take a walk through the plazas and green space that connect all of the various office buildings, residential buildings, and shopping. There are interesting things that take place regularly on these plazas from concerts to markets, and more.
- MIT is one of the premier universities on the planet and is home to some of the smartest people in the world. The campus is beautiful and is definitely worth a visit.
- The MIT museum is a must-visit for anyone interested in technology, science or MIT itself. There are numerous different displays and exhibits that range from robotics to artificial intelligence, to holography and much more.
- There are a ton of very cool bars and restaurants to check out in the neighborhood including Lord Hobo, Firebrand Saints, Emma’s, and many more. Also, checking out the Cambridge Brewing Company is definitely worth it if you are a beer lover!