Malden Greenway Plan Wins New Urbanism Award

May 11, 2018
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The Malden River Greenway planning process, which played out last summer and concluded last fall in Everett, has won a 2018 Urbanism Award from the Congress for New Urbanism (CNU) – an all New England non-profit.

The award was given to Utile, which ran the planning process, and also to Mystic River Watershed Council (MyRWA). Utile submitted the process for consideration and won in the Green Infrastructure Award category.

The planning process kicked off last summer in Malden – and encompassed Everett, Medford and other private stakeholders, such as Encore Boston Harbor. The planning process held meeting in each of the three cities, and wrapped up in Everett. Utile designed an entire greenway along the Malden River, which has been horribly underutilized for years.

“For generations the Malden River was an industrial waterway walled-off to public use,” read the award submission. “The Malden River Greenway lays out a vision that will transform the river, creating a world-class park system running through the cities of Everett, Malden, and Medford.”

Drew Kane of Utile said the award came because the process had such buy-in from the public, and that was noticed.

“There’s definitely momentum there,” he said. “It’s got a great landscape and everything, but isn’t visible to a lot of people. The thing that I think they noticed was the renaissance for this area was not only at a local level, but at a regional level…I think it was something people were looking for and it was hard not to get on board.”

Kane said he enjoyed participating in the planning project, and now he is hoping to be able see the plan get built out in total.

“I just hope it gets built,” he said. “We’ll have to see if everyone comes on board, such as National Grid. I hope it’s a way for these municipalities to see the River as an advantage. If they can make it happen, it can be an incredible story and a real legacy to point to.”

The Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU) is an international non-profit dedicated to building and restoring places people love. CNU brings together architects, planners, developers, engineers, and citizen advocates dedicated to making their communities walkable, equitable, sustainable, and dynamic. Members of the Congress for the New Urbanism help create vibrant and walkable cities, towns, and neighborhoods where people have diverse choices for how they live, work, shop, and get around. People want to live in well-designed places that are unique and authentic. CNU’s mission is to help people build those places.

Other award winners included Boston’s transportation plan titled ‘GoBoston 2030’ and Somerville’s new plan for the Winter Hill neighborhoods. Winners were from all over New England.