The Greenway project began in late autumn but shut down for the winter once the ground froze up. The Iron Horse crew’s been back on the job in recent weeks and it’s all taking shape. The rails have all been removed. Most of the railroad ties are gone and the crew will probably have the remaining ties near the river removed today or tomorrow.
Next up, is laying out a 90′ x 5′ vegetation border behind the Biltmore restaurant. Once Iron Horse builds the frame, the Biltmore will donate and plant the trees and shrubs and will be tend and care for them.
After that, comes the “Sunset Deck” – where the trail ends at the Charles River they’ll be building a wooden deck at a scenic spot out over the river.
The final part of the project for Iron Horse is to grade the whole trail and then lay down and roll the stone dust path. They say that’s the easiest part. The stone dust trail will run from National Lumber to the Charles River with a spur about halfway down that will lead out to Needham Street
Meanwhile the city’s Parks & Rec Dept have ordered all the extras – signs for Chestnut and Easy St featuring the lovely logo (above) that local designer Heidi Werner donated, benches donated by Northland Development, information kiosks donated by Trip Advisor. Once the trail’s complete the city will install all the extras.
An anonymous donor has funded an effort to beautifully restore two of the old railroad switches and Newton North student have been doing much of the work over the last few months. Once they’re done the city will install these pieces of local history back on the trail.
Lastly, the city is repaving Oak St this month I believe. As part of that job they’ll take care of the Greenway’s Oak St crossing.
It’s all coming together nicely and a big honking Upper Falls party is now being planned for (tentatively) Sunday, June 29 to celebrate the official opening of the Upper Falls Greenway to the public.
Special shout-outs go to Frank Nicols, the city engineer who’s been overseeing the whole project from the start and Carol Schein from Parks & Rec who’s been taking care of myriad details throughout.