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Congress Street in Fort Point

The Public Works Department plans to reconstruct Congress Street in the Fort Point neighborhood.

With the help of the Fort Point neighborhood, we will explore ways to improve the street between Sleeper Street and Boston Wharf Road. We want to build a street that is safe, convenient, comfortable for everyone, while meeting the needs of residents and businesses. This project will include:

  • new, accessible sidewalks
  • safer crosswalks
  • street-light upgrades
  • street trees and landscaping, and
  • much more!

About the project

Congress Street is an important connection between South Station and the Fort Point neighborhood and the South Boston Waterfront. Initial planning for this project began with the Crossroads Initiative, which emerged with the completion of the "Big Dig".

"Crossroads" are streets connecting neighborhoods previously divided by the elevated highway:

  • Causeway Street
  • Broad Street
  • Summer Street, and
  • Congress Street.

Congress Street is the final of these four streets to be redesigned.

As we redesign Congress Street together, we will plan alongside other projects in the area:

  • the redesign and reconstruction of Boston Wharf Road and part of West Service Road
  • the redesign and reconstruction of Congress Street between Boston Wharf Road and Pier 4 Boulevard
  • the completion of Martin's Park and the reconstruction of Sleeper Street, between Congress Street and Seaport Boulevard, and
  • the South Boston Seaport Strategic Transit Plan.

Final design

A rendering of Congress Street after the reconstruction project.

In our public meeting on November 16, 2022, we shared the final design for Congress Street. While some elements still need to be approved by the Fort Point Channel Landmark District Commission, we are excited to build a Congress Street with:

  • Significantly wider, saw-cut concrete sidewalks on both sides of the street
  • New crosswalks on Congress Street and raised crosswalks over Sleeper, Farnsworth, and Stillings Streets
  • Bike lanes that are grade-separated from the sidewalk and have a built island separating the bike lane from the travel lanes
  • Places for short-term stopping to enable safe pick-up and drop-off of goods and people
  • Protection for the 8 living trees on Congress Street and the planting of 37 more trees, diversifying the species along the corridor
  • Permeable pavers and structural soils to improve tree health
  • Consistent street lighting using the Fort Point fixture
  • Additional bike racks and benches

Miss our meeting on November 16?

View a recording of the meeting

Download the slides

A Street sidewalks

With the Congress Street project, we will widen sidewalks on A Street between Congress Street and Melcher Street.

  • For many years, the Fort Point community has advocated for wider sidewalks. 
  • Today's sidewalks are in poor condition and too narrow for pedestrians, especially those using mobility devices. Street lights, sign posts, and fire hydrants further narrow the passable space.
  • New sidewalks will be at least 7' wide and up to 10' wide.

A person carrying two bags of groceries squeezes past a sign pole on A Street in the Fort Point neighborhood.

On June 5, 2023, we hosted a virtual meeting to discuss the wider sidewalks on A Street. In the meeting, we covered:

  • Context for the project, including current and planned transit and biking networks
  • The City's design goals for A Street
  • Multiple options for allocating space between the wider sidewalks, including:
    • Changing the number of travel lanes
    • Changing the direction of A Street to one-way northbound
    • Variations on possible bike lanes on A Street

We will review feedback from the meeting, as well as comments shared by email or phone call. Next steps for design will be shared via email, this website, and future community events. 

Download the presentation

Watch the recording

Send us an email

Leave a voicemail

Project Map

Projects on related streets

Sleeper Street

With the Congress Street project, we will reconstruct Sleeper Street between Congress Street and Seaport Boulevard.

  • The new Sleeper Street will feature accessible sidewalks and a raised crosswalk for Martin's Park.
  • We will retain Resident Permit Parking on the eastern curb.
Melcher Street

The proponents of 51 Melcher Street will:

  • Build curb extensions and accessible crosswalks at the intersection of Melcher Street and A Street, 
  • Build a compliant sidewalk from their building to A Street, and
  • Fund accessibility improvements for the southern sidewalk, east of site approaching Summer Street.
Boston Wharf Road

As part of the development at Boston Wharf Road and Congress Streets, the proponents will construct one-way separated bike lanes on Boston Wharf Road between Pastene Alley and Seaport Boulevard.

  • Designs are final, and construction is expected in 2023-2024.

Previous Meetings

Previous Meetings

On May 26, 2022, we hosted a public meeting. We talked about the City's approach to street design, including how we design signalized intersections, accessible sidewalks, bike facilities, and more.

We shared our preferred design for Congress Street. We plan to provide more room for people walking, create safe opportunities to cross the street, allow for some on-street curb access, build separated bike lanes, and plant new street trees. 

The graphics represent an informed design, but are not final. We are gathering feedback through June 17, 2022.

Below, you can view the graphics we shared at a public meeting on May 26, 2022. These graphics are not final.

On February 28, 2022, we hosted a public meeting. We talked about the history of this project and shared how other ongoing projects and plans impact our design options.

We shared three ideas for how we could redesign Congress Street. In every option, we can provide more room for people walking, create safe opportunities to cross the street, and plant new street trees. In some, we show what is possible if we retain more parking or if we add separated bike lanes.

These concepts are not the final design, but meant to start a conversation. We are gathering feedback through March 21, 2022.

A cross-section view and plan view of Congress Street designed with wider sidewalks and on-street parking.

OPTION A INCLUDES:
  • Raised crosswalks over the side streets
  • Wider sidewalks with room for street trees and some outdoor dining
  • On-street parking and deliveries

A cross-section view and plan view of Congress Street designed with much wider sidewalks.

OPTION B INCLUDES:
  • Raised crosswalks over the side streets
  • Maximized sidewalk widths with lots of space for street trees, outdoor dining, and other street furniture

A cross-section view and plan view of Congress Street designed with wider sidewalks and separated bike lanes

OPTION C INCLUDES:
  • Raised crosswalks over the side streets
  • Wider sidewalks with room for street trees and some outdoor dining
  • Separated bike lanes

After our meeting, we visited Congress Street multiple times to meet with business owners and staff. We asked about their use the street for deliveries and curbside pick-up. We also accepted feedback via email or online form. We sought their input through April, 2022.

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