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Boston: Washington Street Walking Map

Boston: Washington Street Walking Map

From Dudley Square to Chinatown, Washington Street is in the midst of an astonishing small-business and real-estate revival that is bringing new life and vitality to this historic part of the city. In colonial times Washington St was a narrow land bridge connecting Boston proper, which lay out on a peninsula, to the mainland behind. Boston Neck, as it was called, was not more than 100 feet wide at some points. When the early 19th century saw overcrowding of the city’s center, city business and government began to fill in the marshland along both sides of the Neck. New Chinese immigrants settled the land around the train station at the northern edge, and wealthy merchants built elegant town houses to the south. The financial panic of the 1870s led to the exodus of wealthy families. An elevated rapid transit train was constructed down the center in 1899 and did little to enhance the area’s appeal. The dismantling of the El in the 1980s finally set the stage for redevelopment.


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