Boylston Street

Boylston Street is the name of a major east-west thoroughfare in the city of Boston, Massachusetts. The road begins in Boston's Fenway neighborhood, runs through Back Bay, forms the southern border of the Boston Public Garden and Boston Common, and ends in Downtown Boston.

A different Boylston Street runs through Boston's western suburbs, Newton and Brookline.

Coordinates: 42°20′55″N 71°04′58″W / 42.3486464°N 71.0827003°W

Street signs at Boylston and Hereford Streets
Boylston Street, Boston, MA
Boylston Street in 1911


As early as 1722, Boylston Street, then a short road on the outskirts of the town of Boston, was known as Frogg Lane or Frog Lane.[1] It was later renamed for Ward Nicholas Boylston (1747–1828),[2][3][4][5] a philanthropist and benefactor of Harvard University. Boylston, who was a descendent of Zabdiel Boylston,[6] was born in Boston and spent much of his life in it. Boylston Market, and the town of Boylston, Massachusetts, were also named after him.[4]


From west to east, Boston's Boylston Street begins at the intersection of Park Drive and Brookline Avenue as a two-way, six-lane road in Boston's Fenway neighborhood. It runs through high-rise, mixed-use buildings one block south of Fenway Park before forming the northern boundary of the Back Bay Fens at the Storrow Drive/Commonwealth Avenue right-of-way. Past the Fenway, Boylston Street enters the Back Bay neighborhood, where it becomes a major commercial artery carrying three lanes of traffic eastbound. As it travels through the Back Bay, it forms the northern boundary of Copley Square and provides the southern limits to the Boston Public Garden, before becoming a two-way street running along Boston Common's southern edge from Charles Street to Tremont Street. After Tremont Street, Boylston returns to carrying one-way traffic east before ending at Washington Street in the downtown area, where it continues as Essex Street.

The MIT Rogers Building was at 497 Boylston Street when MIT had its original campus in Boston, before it moved to Cambridge in 1916.[7] A plaque on the building serves as a commemoration.

On April 15, 2013, Boylston Street was the scene of two explosive detonations that occurred during the running of the 117th Boston marathon, which killed 3 people and wounded at least 264.



The MBTA Green Line follows Boylston Street in Back Bay, with stops at Boylston, Arlington, Copley, and Hynes Convention Center.


  1. ^ Bonner, John (1722). "The town of Boston in New England". The Library of Congress. Retrieved 2018-10-21.
  2. ^ "Ward Nicholas Boylston" Archived 2008-05-17 at the Wayback Machine, Princeton (Massachusetts) Historical Society
  3. ^ Drake, Samuel Adams. Old landmarks and historic personages of Boston. Boston : James R. Osgood and Co., 1873.
  4. ^ a b Bentinck-Smith, William, "Nicholas Boylston and His Harvard Chair", Proceedings of the Massachusetts Historical Society, Third Series, Vol. 93, (1981), pp. 17-39
  5. ^ "A Letter from Nicholas Boylston (1771?-1839)", Bulletin of the Public library of the city of Boston, The Trustees, 1921. Cf.pp.307-309.
  6. ^ "Boylston Family Papers: 1688-1979", Massachusetts Historical Society.
  7. ^ "Massachusetts Institute of Technology : President's Report 1921". Mentions the Rogers Building on Boylston Street in Boston.
  8. ^

External links

Route map:

Media related to Boylston Street at Wikimedia Commons

500 Boylston Street

500 Boylston Street is a 1.3-million square foot postmodern building located in the Back Bay section of Boston and part of the city's High Spine, completed in 1989. It sits next to the landmark Trinity Church, Boston. It dominates the western half of the city block bounded by Boylston, Clarendon and Berkeley streets and St. James Avenue. It was designed by John Burgee Architects with Philip Johnson, with structural engineering by LeMessurier Consultants and MEP/FP engineering by Cosentini Associates, Inc. The construction project was managed by Bond Brothers. It cost $100 million to build. The site contains approximately 137,000 square feet (12,700 m2) of land area, with approximately 500 feet (150 m) of frontage on Boylston Street.The first six floors are retail and small office space. Above that there is a 19-story office tower with Class A office space. It has approximately 715,000 square feet (66,400 m2) of office space. It has an underground parking lot for 1,000 cars that it shares with 222 Berkeley Street.

941–955 Boylston Street

The building at 941–955 Boylston Street in the Back Bay district of Boston, Massachusetts was designed by Arthur H. Vinal in 1886, while he was City Architect, as the city's first combined fire and police station. The building, constructed in 1887, is in the Richardsonian Romanesque style, as was Vinal's most notable other work, the Chestnut Hill Water Works pumping station, built at about the same time. It has been designated a Boston Landmark by the Boston Landmarks Commission.

The fire station at 941 Boylston, which is still active, houses Boston Fire Department Engine Company 33 and Ladder Company 15. The police station, 955 Boylston, was home to Boston Police Department Division 16 until 1976. From 1976 to 2007, the police station was home to the Institute of Contemporary Art; in 2007 it was acquired by Boston Architectural College for $7.22 million.A courtyard between the two buildings originally led to shared stables for fire department and police horses. Division 16 would later add a single-story building immediately to the west (out of frame in the photo above). By 1976, the advent of motorized patrols had led to a consolidation of Boston's smaller police divisions, including division 16, into larger police districts, resulting in the closure and redevelopment of the police station.

Plaques on the Boylston St. facade memorialize four Boston firefighters who died in the line of duty: Cornelius J. Noonan (d. 1938), Richard F. Concannon (d. 1961), Richard B. Magee (d. 1972), and Stephen F. Minehan (d. 1994).

Arlington station (MBTA)

Arlington is a station on the light rail MBTA Green Line. located at the southwest corner of the Boston Public Garden at the corner of Arlington and Boylston Streets at the east end of the Back Bay neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts. Arlington was not part of the 1914-opened Boylston Street Subway; its construction was delayed by World War I and the station opened in 1921.

Beethoven Hall (Boston)

Beethoven Hall (1874-1878) was an auditorium in Boston, Massachusetts, that hosted musical performances and other entertainments in the 1870s. It sat on Washington Street, near Boylston Street, in today's Boston Theater District/Chinatown neighborhood. In 1879 the renovated hall re-opened as the Park Theatre. The building survived until 1990, when it was razed.

Boston Common

Boston Common (also known as the Common) is a central public park in downtown Boston, Massachusetts. It is sometimes erroneously referred to as the Boston Commons. Dating from 1634, it is the oldest city park in the United States. The Boston Common consists of 50 acres (20 ha) of land bounded by Tremont Street (139 Tremont St.), Park Street, Beacon Street, Charles Street, and Boylston Street. The Common is part of the Emerald Necklace of parks and parkways that extend from the Common south to Franklin Park in Jamaica Plain, Roxbury, and Dorchester. A visitors' center for all of Boston is located on the Tremont Street side of the park.

The Central Burying Ground is located on the Boylston Street side of Boston Common and contains the burial sites of the artist Gilbert Stuart and the composer William Billings. Also buried there are Samuel Sprague and his son, Charles Sprague, one of America's earliest poets. Samuel Sprague was a participant in the Boston Tea Party and fought in the Revolutionary War. The Common was designated as a Boston Landmark by the Boston Landmarks Commission in 1977.

Boylston Street Fishweir

In archeological literature, the name Boylston Street Fishweir refers to ancient fishing structures first discovered in 1913, buried 29 to 40 feet (8.8 to 12.2 m) below Boylston Street in Boston, Massachusetts. Reports written in 1942 and 1949 describe what was thought to be remains of one large fishweir, 2,500 years old, made of up to 65,000 wooden stakes distributed over an estimated 2 hectares (4.9 acres) of the former mud flat and marshland in what is now the Back Bay section of Boston. A different interpretation of these findings is offered by new evidence and contemporary archeological research techniques.

Boylston Street subway

The Boylston Street subway is a tram tunnel which lies primarily under Boylston Street in Boston, Massachusetts. In operation since 1914, it now carries all four branches of the MBTA Green Line from Kenmore Square under the Back Bay into downtown Boston, where it joins with the older Tremont Street subway. The tunnel originally ended just east of Kenmore Square; it was extended under the square to new portals at Blandford Street and St. Marys Street in 1932.

Boylston station

Boylston is a light rail station in Boston, Massachusetts. It serves the MBTA Green Line system, and is located on the southeast corner of Boston Common at the intersection of Boylston Street and Tremont Street. Boylston opened along with Park Street in 1897 as the first subway stations in North America. After more than a century of continuous operation, Boylston station retains an appearance more like its original look than any other station in the MBTA system.

Boylston station serves as a stop on the bus rapid transit Silver Line, with a southbound stop at street level. Construction of a proposed underground Silver Line station at this location has been postponed indefinitely.

Boylston is not handicapped accessible. Nearby Park Street, Chinatown, and Arlington stations are fully accessible.

Copley Square

Copley Square, named for painter John Singleton Copley, is a public square in Boston's Back Bay neighborhood, bounded by Boylston Street, Clarendon Street, St. James Avenue, and Dartmouth Street. Prior to 1883 it was known as Art Square due to its many cultural institutions, some of which remain today. It is a pending Boston Landmark.

Copley station

Copley is an underground light rail station on the MBTA Green Line, located in the Back Bay section of Boston, Massachusetts. Located in and named after Copley Square, the station has entrances and exits along Boylston Street and Dartmouth Street.

Copley station opened in 1914 as part of the Boylston Street Subway. The station is accessible following extensive station renovation completed in 2011. The renovation project was subject to a significant court case regarding the project's effects on the Old South Church.

Eliot station

Eliot is a light rail station on the MBTA Green Line "D" Branch located just north of Route 9 (Boylston Street) between the Newton Highlands and Newton Upper Falls villages of Newton, Massachusetts. The station has a parking lot at the end of Lincoln Street, a pedestrian entrance from Meredith Street, and pedestrian entrances from both sides of Route 9. A footbridge, built in 1977, crosses Route 9 adjacent to the railroad bridge.

Emerson College

Emerson College is a private college in downtown Boston, Massachusetts. Founded in 1880 by Charles Wesley Emerson as a "school of oratory," the college offers more than three dozen degree programs in the area of Arts and Communication and is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges. Located in Boston's Washington Street Theatre District on the edge of the Boston Common, the school also maintains buildings in Los Angeles and the town of Well, The Netherlands.

Green Line "C" Branch

The "C" Branch, also called the Beacon Street Line or Cleveland Circle Line, is one of four branches of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority's Green Line light rail system in the Boston, Massachusetts metropolitan area. The line begins at Cleveland Circle in the Brighton neighborhood of Boston and runs on the surface through Brookline along the median of Beacon Street. Reentering Boston, the line goes underground through the St. Marys Street Incline and joins the "B" and "D" Branches at Kenmore. Trains run through the Boylston Street Subway to Copley where the "E" Branch joins, then continue through the Tremont Street Subway to downtown Boston. As of 2017, the "C" Branch terminates at North Station; further service to Lechmere is provided by the "E" Branch.

Hynes Convention Center station

Hynes Convention Center is an underground light rail station on the MBTA Green Line, located at the intersection of Newbury Street and Massachusetts Avenue at the Hynes Convention Center, located in the western end of the Back Bay neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts. It was opened by the Boston Elevated Railway (BERy) in 1914 as a transfer station between east-west streetcars running in the Boylston Street Subway to the Tremont Street Subway, and north-south streetcars on Massachusetts Avenue. The surface cars were replaced by buses in the mid-20th century; Hynes is still a transfer location to the key route 1 bus and two other MBTA bus routes.

The subway station is not currently wheelchair accessible, although a renovation to the station is planned around 2019 as part of air rights development over the adjacent Massachusetts Turnpike. Like all MBTA bus stops, the surface-level stop is fully accessible.

McGreevy's (Boston)

McGreevy's Bar is located on Boylston Street in Boston, Massachusetts, across from Hynes Convention Center. Founded in 2008 by Ken Casey and Peter Nash (also known as Pete Nice), McGreevy's is a re-opened version of the bar formerly called Third Base Saloon, which shut down in the 1920s due to prohibition.

Newbury Street

Newbury Street is located in the Back Bay area of Boston, Massachusetts, in the United States. It runs roughly east-to-west, from the Boston Public Garden to Brookline Avenue. The road crosses many major arteries along its path, with an entrance to the Mass Pike westbound at Mass Ave. Newbury Street is a destination known for its many retail shops and restaurants.

Park Drive (parkway)

Park Drive is a mostly one-way, two-lane parkway in the Fenway-Kenmore neighborhood of Boston that runs along the northern and western edges of the Back Bay Fens before ending at Mountfort Street. As part of the Emerald Necklace park system mainly designed by Frederick Law Olmsted in the late 19th century, Park Drive, along with the Back Bay Fens and the Fenway, connects the Commonwealth Avenue Mall and Boylston Street to Beacon Street and the Riverway. For a portion of its length, the parkway runs along the Muddy River and is part of the Metropolitan Park System of Greater Boston's Muddy River Reservation. Like others in the park system, it is maintained by the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation.

Stony Brook station (MBTA)

Stony Brook is a rapid transit station in Boston, Massachusetts. It serves the MBTA Orange Line, and is located below grade at Boylston Street in the Jamaica Plain neighborhood. The station opened on May 4, 1987 as part of the Southwest Corridor project, replacing an earlier station that was open from 1897 to 1940. After nearby Green Street station, it is the second-least-busy station on the Orange Line, with 3,652 daily boardings by a 2013 count.

Tremont Street subway

The Tremont Street subway in Boston's MBTA Subway system is the oldest subway tunnel in North America and the third oldest still in use worldwide to exclusively use electric traction (after the City and South London Railway in 1890, and the Budapest Metro's Line 1 in 1896), opening on September 1, 1897. It was originally built to get streetcar lines off the traffic-clogged streets, instead of as a true rapid transit line. It now forms the central part of the Green Line, connecting Boylston Street to Park Street and Government Center stations.

The tunnel originally served five closely spaced stations: Boylston, Park Street, Scollay Square, Adams Square, and Haymarket, with branches to the Public Garden Portal and Pleasant Street Incline south of Boylston. Park Street, Scollay Square, and Haymarket stations were altered over the next two decades as transfers were added to the Cambridge-Dorchester Subway, East Boston Tunnel, and Main Line Elevated (now part of the Red, Blue, and Orange Lines, respectively). In 1962, the southern portal at Pleasant Street was closed; the following year, the northern half of the tunnel was substantially altered when Government Center and a new Boston City Hall replaced Scollay Square and Adams Square. The northbound tunnel to Haymarket station was rerouted; the southbound tunnel is still original. Scollay Square station was rebuilt as Government Center, and Adams Square station was closed. In 1971, the original Haymarket station was replaced with a new station just to the south.

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