Soldiers Field Road

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Soldiers Field Road
Soldiers Field Road.png
Soldiers Field Road highlighted in red
Maintained byMassachusetts DCR
Length4.3 mi[1][2] (6.9 km)
Coordinates42°22′22″N 71°7′45″W / 42.37278°N 71.12917°W / 42.37278; -71.12917Coordinates: 42°22′22″N 71°7′45″W / 42.37278°N 71.12917°W / 42.37278; -71.12917
West end US 20 in Brighton
I‑90 / Mass Pike in Allston
East endStorrow Drive in Fenway–Kenmore

Soldiers Field Road is a major crosstown parkway in Boston, Massachusetts, running west to east from U.S. Route 20 in the northwest corner of Brighton to the Boston University Bridge.[1] It follows the course of the Charles River and also passes by the campuses of Harvard University and Boston University. The road is named for the area south of the road on a bend in the Charles River which has been the home of Harvard Crimson athletics since the 1890s.

Although considered a "major crosstown street", the road has a 10-foot height restriction due to viaduct crossings. In 2013 one of these crossings was the site of a serious bus crash.[3] Speed limits range from 30 to 40 miles per hour (48 to 64 km/h) on various segments of the road.

Route description[edit]

Looking eastbound in the Allston neighborhood

Soldiers Field Road is one link in a nearly nine-mile continuous roadway along the southern bank of the Charles River, continuing to the east as Storrow Drive, David G. Mugar Way, and Embankment Road, and to the west as Nonantum Road.

The road begins at the intersection with Beacon Street and Nonantum Road. For the first 0.4 miles there is no median division, and there is at-grade access to local businesses. The road then passes under the Arsenal Street Bridge access roads. The road then passes south of the Northeastern University Boathouse and Charles River Community Garden, which it provides access to on the westbound side of the road. One half-mile east of the Arsenal Street Bridge there is a footbridge crossing over the road between Telford Street and the Artesani Playground, which is part of Christian Herter Park. There is access to and from the park at an at-grade intersection with Everett Street. As the road turns north it passes the WBZ headquarters and Smith Playground before following the perimeter of the Soldiers Field athletic facility, home to Harvard Athletics. The closest portions of the facility to the road are the field hockey field, tennis courts and practice fields. At the top of the bend in the Charles River the road intersects with the Eliot Bridge, which heads west from the northern end of the bend, providing access to Greenough Boulevard, Mount Auburn Hospital and Mount Auburn Cemetery in neighboring Cambridge. As the road and the Charles bends southward, it passes Jordan Field (the soccer field), the Palmer Dixon Center, Dillon Field House, Lavietes Pavilion and Blodgett Pool to the southwest and the Newell Boathouse to the northeast of the road.

Soldiers Field Road then passes under North Harvard Street as it joins Anderson Memorial Bridge. It continues eastward past the Harvard Business School campus, where the river makes another bend at the Weeks Footbridge. The road then passes under the approach to the Western Avenue Bridge, where traffic passes one way from Cambridge into the Allston neighborhood. Just three hundred yards later, the road passes under the approach road between Cambridge Street and the River Street Bridge, which returns traffic from Allston to Cambridge. To the south of this bridge the road passes to the north and east of rail yards before paralleling the Massachusetts Turnpike from just east of the Allston tollbooths and past Boston University until just west of the Grand Junction Railroad Bridge. At this point the road and river split from the Mass Pike and pass under the Boston University Bridge, at which point Soldiers Field Road becomes Storrow Drive.


Portions of the current alignment of Soldiers Field Road were originally part of the Charles River Speedway, which was built in 1899. The speedway ran from just west of Telford Street to the site of the Eliot Bridge (which wasn't built until 1950).[4] The only surviving building relating to the speedway is the Charles River Reservation (Speedway)-Upper Basin Headquarters, which formerly housed administrative and logistical personnel for the Metropolitan District Commission.

Major intersections[edit]

The entire route is in Suffolk County. All exits are unnumbered.

Brighton0.00.0 US 20 (Beacon Street) / Nonantum Road west – Watertown Square, Newton, Brighton CenterWestern terminus at a traffic circle
Allston0.71.1Western Avenue / Arsenal Street – Brighton Center, WatertownInterchange
2.03.2 Route 2 / US 3 / Fresh Pond Parkway – ArlingtonPartial interchange
2.54.0Harvard Street – Harvard Square, Allston, CambridgeInterchange
3.15.0 I‑90 / Mass Pike / Western Avenue / Cambridge Street – Central Square, CambridgeInterchange; tolled access to/from I-90
Fenway–Kenmore4.16.6University Road – BrooklineEastern terminus; eastbound exit and entrance
4.16.6Storrow Drive eastContinuation beyond University Road
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Office of Geographic and Environmental Information (MassGIS), Commonwealth of Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs –
  2. ^ a b Google (November 23, 2014). "Soldiers Field Road" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved November 23, 2014.
  3. ^ "After Harvard Visit, Dozens Injured in Bus Crash". USA Today. February 4, 2013. Retrieved February 4, 2013.
  4. ^ "Allston Trotting Parks". Brighton Allston Historical Society. Retrieved November 23, 2014.

See also[edit]