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Friends of the
Community Path

112 Belmont St., #2
Somerville, MA 02143
(617) 776 7769


Friends of the Community Path Press Page


Nov. 16, 2010: Somerville Chamber of Commerce awards the Friends or the Community Path a PowderHouse award: Somerville Journal

Nov. 10, 2010: City and MBTA working on new lease for the Path that will allow a 1,500' extension: Boston Globe Somerville Journal

Oct. 24, 2010: posting (click here, read down a little) on losing federal TIGER II grant competition

Press and photos about our walking Tour of the Community Path: Sept. 30, 2010 Boston Globe article; Sept. 29 article; and Oct. 7, 2010: Somerville Journal article;

July 18, 2010 Sunday Boston Globe article (read down a little) on Comm Path not being included with Green Line:

July 16, 2010 Somerville News - Mayor Curtatone on Comm Path not being included with Green Line ext.:

May 15, 2010 Let's repeat 2-year old Transportation success in Somerville: ttp://

January 2010 - Community Group ties Path to Green Line extension:


Background, History and More Contact Info

  • The Friends are a local community group dedicated to the idea of extending the so-called "Bike Path" from Davis Square, through Somerville, to the Charles River and beyond.
  • The official website for publication is Donations and volunteers are welcomed.
  • The Friends work closely with the City of Somerville Office of Strategic Planning & Community Development; our contact is Kathleen Ziegenfuss at 617-625-6600 x2519. Any residents with concerns or ideas about the path are encouraged to contact us, or Kathleen at the City.
  • The first known mention of the path concept was in Minuteman-Charles River Bikeway Connector Feasibility Study, March 1996, CTPS. You cannot view/print the report online, but you can order a hard copy here:
  • In the fall of 2000, the City of Somerville commissioned a feasibility study. Copies can be found at the website of the Somerville Bicycle Committee: 617-625-6600 x2519
  • The Friends of the Community Path formed on May 31st, 2001 after the publication of the feasibility study.

2003 News:

  • Funding to design the Cedar to Central Street segment has been secured, and the design contract is in progress! Another series of public hearings will be held when this design reaches the 25% state. Join our email list to be notified.
  • The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has provided $10,000 of funding, in support of health.
  • A line item to fully fund path design was placed into the environmental bond bill in July 2002, by State Representatives Toomey, Ciampa & Jehlen. A technical flaw in the drafting will make this funding difficult to spend.

Selected Accomplishments of the Friends of the Community Path


Ongoing Advocacy for the Community Path extension

  • Meeting with and writing letters to local, state, and federal officials? about the local and regional significance of the Path, especially in relation to the Green Line extension (GLX).
  • Participating in meetings about the GLX and in current GLX Design working group meetings.
  • Collaborating with local groups like Somerville Transportation Equity Partnership (STEP), Groundwork Somerville (GWS), Shape Up Somerville, Somerville Community Corporation (SCC), the Somerville Bicycle Committee, and Mass Central Rail Trail, to advance progress on the Path.
  • Attending conferences and Green Line meetings to advocate for the Path  On October 13, 2010, we tabled at and participated in MassDOT's second GreenDOT conference:
  • Gathering hundreds of Path support letters to submit to federal and state officials.

Education and Awareness

  • Made “the Community Path” a household phrase on the lips of state and local government officials and politicians, non-profits, advocacy groups, community members, and the press.  People love the Community Path and want it to be extended with the Green Line.
  • Emphasizing that proposed Community Path extension will be a shared multi-use path – a Community Path – and not simply a bicycle path.
  • Conducting periodic walking tours of the proposed Community Path, including the one on September 25, 2010.
  • Tabling and parading at Artbeat, Spice of Life, Mystic Herring Run Festivals.  Raised funds & spirits with the Bicycle Canoe rig.
  • Organized City clean-ups at the Cedar-to-Lowell section of the Path (2001-2006).
  • Conducted community outreach about the path including organizing a series of community meetings, presenting at homes abutting the path, door-to-door outreach, etc. (2001-2003).

Grant Successes

  • 2007 - Collaborated in a $500,000 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grant effort (2007-2009) for Active Living byDesign.  This grant funded the City of Somerville’s first Bicycle-Pedestrian Coordinator.

  •  2003  Won a $50,000 Tourism grant from the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority.  This was joint application with the City of Somerville for the City to do early path design (before the Green Line extension was definitely happening).
  •  2003  Won a $10,000 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grant for the City to do early path design.
  •  2003  Won a $10,000 Bikes Belong grant.
  •  2003  Won a $1,000 Ben and Jerry’s Foundation grant.
  •  2002  Won a $200  Fields Pond Foundation grant.

How the funds we've raised have been spent:

  • Donated $5,000 to the City of Somerville to pay Pan Am Railways (formerly
    Boston & Maine RR) to file for federal abandonment of trackage rights to the
    abandoned track from Cedar St. to Lowell Street (2006).
  • Contributed $8,000 for Junction Path Park, to show community support in
    the City’s grant application to construct the park and new path segment (2008)
  • Committed $5,000 from our funds and procuring an additional $5,000 match
    for the City of Somerville’s Tiger II grant application for Path Construction
  • Materials and printing (flyers, maps, etc.), other expenses to organize
    City and State support for the Path’s extension (event tabling fees, networking
    workshop fees, etc.), and actual Path construction (such as matching federal
    grants that require local matching funds).

Promoting the Importance of the Path

Locally: The Community Path and Green Line extensions will run near 6 Somerville public schools to create safe, active routes to schools (and work) with good air quality, helping to fight the epidemics of childhood obesity and asthma.

Regionally:  This extension of the 13-mile Minuteman Trail will eventually link to the 17-miles of Charles River path, connecting 37+ miles of path network through Bedford, Lexington, Arlington, Cambridge, Somerville, and Medford to the Red and Green Lines (in Cambridge and Somerville) and to Boston, Waltham, and Watertown.

Graphics and Photos for Download

-The Friends of the Community Path




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