Alewife work for September

Crews working on the new path along the Alewife Brook returned to Cottage Ave. after a hiatus to pour a small concrete entryway at the end of the street.

Entryway from Cottage Ave. in progress

That’s Route 16 in the background, on the other side of the brook. Looks as though they’ve removed a few more trees from the far bank, too.

Welcome mat

I didn’t notice exactly which day they’d done this work. The photos are from the 16th.

There’s a textured mat set into the concrete, probably to give a tactile signal that the path starts (or stops) here. The crew returned on September 28 to remove the wooden forms and fill the gap between the concrete and the street pavement with asphalt.

Mat label

The mat is wrapped in a thick clear plastic, though that doesn’t really show in my photos. (You can click on any photo for a close-up.)

The next week, the morning of September 20, I was on my way to work when I passed an excavator (big-bucket digger with caterpillar treads) chugging down Cottage Ave. When I returned home in the evening, I saw that crews had piled a new kind of fill onto the side of the new path.

New fill (the brown stuff on the side), partially complete

The view is south from a point a little south of the Cottage Ave. entrance, showing where the crew knocked off for the day.

The new fill is brown, and comes to the top of the surface of the path (which is stone dust, as related here.)

That’s the excavator in the background at right.

Stuff in the new fill

The new fill is pretty fine brown stuff. I would just call it “dirt,” but there are things in the fill. Like those rectangular blocks of asphalt in the photo at right.

(What’s with that? Is that better than rocks?)

The photo is just a close-up of the same spot in the left foreground of the “new fill” photo above.

Walking down the path a bit farther towards Mass. Ave. (remember Mass. Ave.? This is a blog about Mass. Ave.), I saw a second layer over the first. It looked like dirt to me, though what its technical specification might be I do not know.

Top layer of dirt over new fill

By the end of the next day the excavator was gone and there was dirt (presumably over the other stuff) on both sides of the path.

A little work also resumed this month on the boardwalk segment of the path near my house.

Under the boardwalk (August)

This is going to be a ramp from the path bed up to the spot where Henderson Street curves around and climbs to cross the Alewife. (That’s just a bit north of Cottage Ave., south of the Henderson Street bridge.)

Crews dug a hole at the southern end of the ramp area back in August. That form has got to be for some kind of anchor. Note the marked-off swale trench behind it.

Sometime later (I missed the day) workers fitted two granite slabs into the form.

Slabs set in concrete September 24.

On September 24 the cement truck returned and crews poured concrete into the mold around the slabs.

There is quite a bit of boardwalk planned for the Arlington parts of the greenway. In addition to this ramp, there’s boardwalk in the Sunnyside stretch (north of Broadway), and  along the phragmites-and-cat-tail marsh at the southern end (where the greenway joins the Minuteman Path).

I suppose these will be some of the last things to be built, other than landscaping.

Where the sidewalk ends

The cement truck came on a Friday. By the end of the day on Monday the 27th, the plywood forms were gone and the whole thing looked as you see it in the photo at left.

Below is the view north from just before the anchor on September 27:

North towards Henderson Street Bridge on September 27

I like this photo because it shows the location pretty clearly. The land slopes up to join Henderson Street — which is why the DCR is building a ramp — and you can see the bridge in the background at right. Notice the first autumn leaves starting to fill the swale trench at left.

For those keeping score, this is my third installment of photos of path construction. I am not trying to be comprehensive or “cover” all the controversies and issues about this project, which are inevitably numerous. You can see earlier photos posted in July and in August. The next installment is here.


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