One of the most important components of the City's waterfront revitalization program is Harborwalk, a continuous public walkway along the water's edge that is, in effect, a re-established shoreline. The Harborwalk System connects the City’s neighborhoods to its Harbor, linking recreational, cultural and historic attractions, as well as access to public transit, including water transportation facilities. Currently 38 miles of Harborwalk have been constructed and when completed the walkway system will stretch over 47 miles from Dorchester to East Boston.
The Harborwalk program is being achieved through collaborative efforts among the BRA, city and state agencies, private developers, residents and harbor advocacy groups. Harborwalk is constructed in segments by developers of waterfront properties pursuant to City Harborpark District zoning regulations that require that new development be set back from the edge of the water a certain distance and that the setback area be improved as a pedestrian path open to the public.
Harborwalk has a changing character as it winds through the City's different neighborhoods and downtown districts, stretching along the East Boston, Charlestown, North End, Downtown, South Boston and Dorchester neighborhoods from Chelsea Creek to the Neponset River. Part of the richness of Harborwalk is its variety, reflecting the various activities and urban texture of adjacent land.