Concord River Greenway

Next Phase of Greenway Construction

              The City of Lowell has received $1,350,000 in PARC and Gateway grant funds to enable completion of the Concord River Greenway Park.  A new bridge will be placed at the end of the Lawrence Street section, crossing over the Concord River to Centennial Island.  From there this multi-use recreational trail will travel on the Lawrence Street side of the Concord River down to Jollene Dubner Park at Rogers Street, then cross the river and travel down the eastern bank of the river to Andover/Church Street.  Wopo Holup’s stone carvings and three additional multi-lingual informational signs are ready to be installed.  Click here for a map of the latest section of the Greenway! Construction will be complete by October.

The Concord River Greenway Park (also know as the CRG or Greenway) is a multi-use trail through the green heart of Lowell.  Parts of it run along an old railroad bed, while it contours the scenic, tree-lined, north-flowing Concord River.  The Greenway is an excellent place to enjoy being outdoors, recreate, exercise and enjoy observing a biodiversity of wildlife from otters and foxes to hawks and mergansers.  We anticipate, in the long range vision of the park, a link from the Greenway to the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail (the BFRT has a trailhead by Showcase Cinemas in Lowell).  We can use your help via membership support.  To learn more about the history and science of the Concord River Greenway, visit the Greenway Classroom pages. 

Contents of this page and additional information (click items below):

CRG Ribbon Cutting

CRG Photo Gallery

Concord River Whitewater Rafting

Directions to the CRG - Davidson Street Trailhead

Directions to the CRG - Lawrence Street Trailhead

CRG Trail Map & Guide: Lawrence Street Section (PDF)

River Voices: Article about protecting open spaces and urban watersheds

Get Involved with the CRG - Become a Valued Land Steward Today!

CRG Background Info

CRG Ribbon Cutting: 

June 12, 2010 marked the ribbon cutting of the Greenway, during the year's River Fest: Art Goes Green event.  Several local Greenway supporters came out to celebrate the ribbon cutting, including City Manager Bernie Lynch, Senator Steven Panagiotakos, LP&CT BOD President Dr. Mark Romanowsky, Bill Martin of the Lowell City Council, and Brian Martin of Congresswoman Niki Tsongas' office.  The ribbon cutting officially marks the opening of improved access to the Concord River for all to enjoy its scenic beauty and rich history.  Thank you to all who joined us for this RiverFest event!  And of course thank you to all who made the event possible, volunteers, partners and sponsors.  As we celebrate the Concord River 
in Lowell, we hope you will find more opportunities to get out and enjoy one of Lowell's greatest treasures.

Greenway construction is still in the works.  Plans to connect the Lawrence Street end with the downtown end of the Greenway are in motion.  The next step will be to construct a foot bridge from the existing path off Lawrence Street to Centennial Island, which will offer a loop trail.  In the meantime, we are also planning and looking forward to connecting Centennial Island to the downtown area of the Greenway.  Look for action to begin soon!  The City of Lowell is overseeing construction of the Greenway.  Timelines for advanced construction phases are not currently available. 

In a nutshell: There have been 2,700 linear feet of path constructed as part of the Greenway so far.  As part of this construction, 53,300 square feet of green space has been created or refurbished.  This includes areas of lawn, shrub, and tree plantings, as well as mulched beds.

 

 

Photo Gallery of the Concord River Greenway at Davidson Street     TOP
          
          
          

Above: CRG artist, Wopo Holup has integrated the natural aesthetics of the river into CRG displays, benches and bridges. Here we see a sketch of the river-bird bollards design that are included in the artwork at the Davidson Street Lot. (Middlesex Community College in background.)

 

River Voices: Concord River Greenway Park     TOP

This image was taken from Rogers Street, on the bridge crossing, looking north towards downtown Lowell.

Read the article by Jane Calvin:

Protecting Open Spaces: Challenges & Opportunities in Urban Watersheds (PDF)



Take a closer look at the Concord River Greenway     TOP

Click any item below to learn more about the Concord River Greenway Park in Lowell:

Article: Greenway Multi-lingual Signage (PDF)

Historic Wayside Signage for Greenway (PDF)

Article: The Greenway as an Outdoor Classroom

Greenway Checklist of Birds (PDF)

More News and Updates (PDF)

 

Get Involved with the Greenway     TOP

Volunteers play a critical role in helping us care for and monitor our properties. If you would like more information about any of the properties or would like to VOLUNTEER AS A LAND STEWARD please let us know (978)934-0030. Action projects, in addition to regular site monitoring, on this property could include: 

  • Litter Collection
  • Invasive Plant Management
  • Landscape- care & basic maintenance, such as weeding, pruning, mulching, plantings and so on.
  • Graffiti (watch for and report to LP&CT office)

     


CRG route, marked in green.

Concord River Greenway Park Project Background     TOP

A long-range goal of the Lowell Parks & Conservation Trust has been to create a greenway park along the Concord River. The park, in its completion, will link the city’s largest park area, Shedd Park and Rogers Fort Hill Park, to the center of the city and a network of walkways that have been developed by the Lowell National Historic Park.

The Concord River Greenway way is also an integral part of the Bay Circuit Trail, which is a network of trails around greater Boston, from Duxbury on the South Shore to Ipswich on the North Shore. Development of the trail is being spearheaded by the Bay Circuit Alliance.

The Concord River is a scenic, natural, cultural, and historical resource of national importance. Its natural beauty amid the city of Lowell is like a hidden jewel providing serenity and retreat from our modern lives.

This linear park will have the main feature of a multi-purpose trail constructed primarily on an abandoned railroad right-of-way paralleling the river. The project seeks to:

  • Preserve the natural beauty and character of the Concord River
  • Preserve the historic corridor that includes mills, dams, an arch bridge, and is the famed section of the river that Henry David Thoreau portaged due to its rapids.
  • Provide a safe, viable transportation alternative between Lowell's neighborhoods and downtown.
  • Provide a missing link in the Bay Circuit Trail, a 200-mile trail from Newburyport to Kingston, and connect to the Friends of the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail from Lowell to Framingham. Friends of the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail from Lowell to Framingham.
  • Connect Lowell's largest open spaces, including Rogers Fort Hill Park and Shedd Park with Lowell Cemetery and the city's cemeteries.

We invite and encourage your support as we build the Concord River Greenway.

Cooperating partners in the effort to create the Concord River Greenway Park include:
  • Back Central Neighborhood Association
  • Bay Circuit Alliance
  • Belvidere Neighborhood Association
  • Bradford Industries
  • Centennial Island Hydroelectric
  • City of Lowell
  • LDFC/Lowell Plan
  • Lowell Heritage Partnership
  • Lowell Heritage State Park
  • Lowell National Historical Park
  • Lowell: The Flowering City
  • MA DCR Recreational Trails Program
  • Massachusetts Riverways Program
  • Northern Middlesex Council of Governments
  • Rails-to-Trails Conservancy
  • Northern Middlesex Council of Governments
  • Rails-to-Trails Conservancy
  • Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance/NPS
  • Riverside Community Council, Sacred Heart Neighborhood Improvement Group
  • Trust for Public Land
  • U.S. EPA New England
See an aerial map of the Greenway route here (PDF)  
With support from the EPA Healthy Communities grant program, we have made tremendous progress on the Concord River Greenway. Our final report to the EPA is available upon request.

"This program is supported in part by a grant from the Lowell Cultural Council, a local agency which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency"