Central Massachusetts is the geographically central region of Massachusetts. Though definitions vary, most include all of Worcester County and the northwest corner of Middlesex County. Worcester, the largest city in the area and the seat of Worcester County, is often considered the cultural capital of the region. Other populous cities include Fitchburg, Gardner, Leominster, and arguably Marlborough and Hopkinton, MA.
The Massachusetts Turnpike (Interstate 90) runs through the southern part of Worcester County. Other interstate highways in the area are I-190, I-290, I-395, and I-495 on the eastern edge. Route 2 is another major east–west highway that spans the northern part of Worcester County. Other significant thoroughfares include Route 9, Route 146, and U.S. Route 20.
The Boston transportation system includes roadway, subway, regional rail, air, and sea options for passenger and freight transit in Boston, Massachusetts. The Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport) operates the Port of Boston, which includes a container shipping facility in South Boston, and Logan International Airport, in East Boston. The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) operates bus, subway, short-distance rail, and water ferry passenger services throughout the city and region. Amtrak operates passenger rail service to and from major northeastern cities. A major bus terminal at South Station is served by varied intercity bus companies. The city is bisected by major highways I-90 and I-93, the intersection of which has undergone a major renovation, nicknamed the Big Dig.
Interstate 95 (I-95) is the main north–south Interstate Highway on the East Coast of the United States, running from U.S. Route 1 (US 1) in Miami, Florida, to the Houlton–Woodstock Border Crossing between Maine and the Canadian province of New Brunswick. The highway largely parallels the Atlantic coast and US 1, except for the portion between Savannah and Washington and the portion between Portland and Houlton, both of which follow a more direct inland route.
Interstate 91 (I-91) is an Interstate Highway in the New England region of the United States. It provides the primary north–south thoroughfare in the western part of the region. The Interstate generally follows the course of the Connecticut River. Its southern terminus is in New Haven, Connecticut, at Interstate 95. The northern terminus is in the village of Derby Line, Vermont, at the Canadian border. Past the Derby Line–Rock Island Border Crossing, the road continues as Quebec Autoroute 55. I-91 is the longest of three Interstate highways whose entire route is located within the New England states and is also the only primary (two-digit) Interstate Highway in New England to intersect all five of the other highways that run through the region. The largest cities along its route are New Haven, Connecticut; Hartford, Connecticut; Springfield, Massachusetts; Northampton, Massachusetts; Greenfield, Massachusetts; Brattleboro, Vermont; White River Junction, Vermont; and St. Johnsbury, Vermont in order from south to north.
Interstate 93 (I-93) is an Interstate Highway in the New England states of Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Vermont in the United States. Spanning approximately 190 miles (310 km) along a north–south axis, it is one of three primary Interstate Highways located entirely within New England; the other two are I-89 and I-91. The largest cities along the route are Boston, Massachusetts, and Manchester, New Hampshire; it also travels through the New Hampshire state capital of Concord.
Worcester is a city and county seat of Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. Named after Worcester, Worcestershire, England, as of the 2020 census the city's population was 206,518, making it the second-most populous city in New England after Boston. Worcester is approximately 40 miles (64 km) west of Boston, 50 miles (80 km) east of Springfield and 40 miles (64 km) north-northwest of Providence. Due to its location near the geographic center of Massachusetts, Worcester is known as the "Heart of the Commonwealth"; a heart is the official symbol of the city.
The Massachusetts Turnpike is a toll highway in the US state of Massachusetts that is maintained by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT). The turnpike begins at the New York state line in West Stockbridge, linking with the Berkshire Connector portion of the New York State Thruway. Spanning 138 miles (222 km) along an east–west axis, the turnpike constitutes the Massachusetts section of Interstate 90 (I-90). The turnpike is the longest Interstate Highway in Massachusetts, while I-90, in full, is the longest Interstate Highway in the United States.
Hopkinton is a town in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States, 25 miles (40 km) west of Boston. The town is best known as the starting point of the Boston Marathon, held annually on Patriots' Day each April, and as the headquarters for the Dell EMC corporation.
Route 9 is a 135.310-mile-long (217.760 km) major east–west state highway in Massachusetts. Along with U.S. Route 20, Route 2, and Interstate 90, Route 9 is one of the major east–west routes of Massachusetts. The western terminus is near the center of the city of Pittsfield. After winding through the small towns along the passes of the Berkshire Mountains, it crosses the college towns of the Pioneer Valley and then south of the Quabbin Reservoir and the rural areas of western Worcester County. Entering the city of Worcester from the southwest corner of the city, it passes through the center of the city and forms the major commercial thoroughfare through the MetroWest suburbs of Boston, parallel to the Massachusetts Turnpike. Crossing the Route 128 freeway circling Boston, it passes through the inner suburbs of Newton and Brookline along Boylston Street, and enters Boston on Huntington Avenue, before reaching its eastern terminus at Copley Square.
Greater Boston is the metropolitan region of New England encompassing the municipality of Boston and its surrounding areas. The region forms the northern arc of the Northeast megalopolis, so Greater Boston means both a metropolitan statistical area (MSA) and a combined statistical area (CSA), which is broader. The MSA consists of most of the eastern third of Massachusetts, excluding the South Coast and Cape Cod; the CSA additionally includes the municipalities of Providence, Manchester, Worcester, the South Coast region, and Cape Cod. While the city of Boston covers 48.4 square miles (125 km2) and has 675,647 residents as of the 2020 census, the urbanization has extended well into surrounding areas and the CSA has a more than 8.4 million people, making it one of the most populous such regions in the U.S. The CSA is one of two in Massachusetts, the other being Greater Springfield. Greater Boston is the only CSA in New England that lies in three states ; some definitions extend it into a fourth (Connecticut).
Interstate 495 (I-495) is an auxiliary route of I-95 in the U.S. state of Massachusetts, maintained by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT). Spanning 120.74 miles (194.31 km), it is the second-longest auxiliary route in the Interstate Highway System, ranking behind I-476 in Pennsylvania by a difference of roughly 11 miles (18 km).
Route 146, sometimes called the Worcester-Providence Turnpike, is a limited-access road in the U.S. state of Massachusetts, maintained by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT). Spanning approximately 21 miles (34 km) along a south–north axis, it is a continuation of Route 146 in Rhode Island, which splits from I-95 in Providence. The southern terminus within Massachusetts exists in Millville, where the expressway enters the state from North Smithfield, Rhode Island. Among several local roads, Route 146 intersects with the Massachusetts Turnpike (I-90) in Millbury and I-290 in Worcester before arriving at its northern terminus at the intersection of several surface streets in downtown Worcester. Most of the route is a freeway, except for a short section near the boundary between Millbury and Sutton where there is driveway access and at-grade crossings.
Interstate 190 (I-190) is a 19.4 mi auxiliary Interstate Highway in the U.S. state of Massachusetts, maintained by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT). Spanning approximately 19 miles (31 km) along a south–north axis, it is a spur route of I-90 in Central Massachusetts. However, its southern terminus exists at its split from I-290 in Worcester, which itself splits from the turnpike in Auburn. Its northern terminus lays at an interchange with Route 2 in Leominster.
Interstate 290 (I-290) is an auxiliary Interstate Highway in the U.S. state of Massachusetts, maintained by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT). Spanning approximately 20 miles (32 km), it is signed as an east-west spur route of I-90 in Central Massachusetts. The route begins in Auburn at I-90 as a northward continuation of I-395. It follows an L-shaped route, the nominally western half of which runs north into the city of Worcester, and upon leaving the city, turns to the east to its eastern terminus at I-495 in Marlborough. Past I-495, the road continues as an unnumbered 1-mile connector to the town of Hudson.
Massachusetts, officially the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, is the most populous state in the New England region of the Northeastern United States. It borders on the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Maine to the east, Connecticut and Rhode Island to the south, New Hampshire and Vermont to the north, and New York to the west. The state's capital and most populous city, as well as its cultural and financial center, is Boston. Massachusetts is also home to the urban core of Greater Boston, the largest metropolitan area in New England and a region profoundly influential upon American history, academia, and the research economy. Originally dependent on agriculture, fishing, and trade. Massachusetts was transformed into a manufacturing center during the Industrial Revolution. During the 20th century, Massachusetts's economy shifted from manufacturing to services. Modern Massachusetts is a global leader in biotechnology, engineering, higher education, finance, and maritime trade.
Interstate 80 (I-80) in the US state of Pennsylvania runs for 311.12 miles (500.70 km) across the northern part of the state. It is designated as the Keystone Shortway and officially as the Z.H. Confair Memorial Highway. This route was built mainly along a completely new alignment, not paralleling any earlier US Routes, as a shortcut to the tolled Pennsylvania Turnpike to the south and New York State Thruway to the north. It does not serve any major cities in Pennsylvania and serves mainly as a cross-state route on the Ohio–New York City corridor. Most of I-80's path across the state goes through hilly and mountainous terrain, while the route passes through relatively flat areas toward the western part of the state.
Interstate 64 (I-64) in the US state of Virginia runs east–west through the middle of the state from West Virginia to the Hampton Roads region, for a total of 299 miles (481 km). It is notable for crossing the mouth of the harbor of Hampton Roads on the Hampton Roads Bridge–Tunnel (HRBT), the first bridge–tunnel to incorporate artificial islands, concurrent with U.S. Route 60 (US 60). Also noteworthy is a section through Rockfish Gap, a wind gap in the Blue Ridge Mountains, which was equipped with an innovative system of airport-style runway lighting embedded into the pavement to aid motorists during periods of poor visibility due to fog or other conditions.
The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) oversees roads, public transit, aeronautics, and transportation licensing and registration in the US state of Massachusetts. It was created on November 1, 2009, by the 186th Session of the Massachusetts General Court upon enactment of the 2009 Transportation Reform Act.
The Providence metropolitan area is a region extending into eight counties in two states, and is the 38th largest metropolitan area in the United States. Anchored by the city of Providence, Rhode Island, it has an estimated population of 1,622,520, exceeding that of Rhode Island by slightly over 60%. The area covers almost all of Rhode Island. Thirty-eight of the 39 municipalities in the state are included; only Westerly is not. The Providence Metropolitan Statistical Area also extends into southern Massachusetts with an average population density of 2300 per mi2. Its Gross Metropolitan Product is the country's 42nd largest at $64.7 billion, just above the Gross State Product of the entire state of Hawaii. Since 2006, the Providence metropolitan area has been officially included in the Greater Boston Combined Statistical Area (CSA), the sixth-largest CSA in the country, with over eight million residents.
In the U.S. state of Massachusetts, U.S. Route 1 is a major north–south route through Essex, Middlesex, Suffolk, Norfolk, and Bristol Counties. The portion of US 1 south of Boston is also known as the Boston-Providence Turnpike, Washington Street, or the Norfolk and Bristol Turnpike, and portions north of Boston are known as the Northeast Expressway and the Newburyport Turnpike.
U.S. Route 20 runs its easternmost 153 miles (246 km) in the U.S. state of Massachusetts. The highway crosses the state border from New Lebanon, New York, into Hancock, Massachusetts, and runs eastward to Boston, where it ends at Route 2 in Kenmore Square. It spends the vast majority of its journey paralleling I-90, which has largely superseded US-20 for through travel. Still, US-20 directly serves many towns and local business areas which the Turnpike bypasses.