The following was submitted by Combined Properties, Inc.:
Residents of Malden and neighboring communities are invited to enjoy a guided stroll along the scenic Malden River on Saturday, May 21, at the second annual WalkMalden River Walk. Free to the public, the walk and other activities get underway at 195 Canal Street in Malden and run from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Hosts are nonprofit organization WalkMalden, along with 195 Canal Street developer Combined Properties, Inc., and Cambridge Health Alliance, whose Malden Family Medicine Center makes its home at the property.
Activities will include a leisurely walk on recently-finished pedestrian paths along the Malden River, a small health fair, blood pressure screenings, breast cancer and smoking cessation information, healthy-living tips, face painting, a free raffle for a children’s bicycle donated by JRA Cycles of Medford, and displays by local arts and education groups. Also on hand will be information about the Northern Strand Trail, a new bicycle path that non-profit organization Bike to the Sea is constructing nearby in partnership with the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority and the Malden Redevelopment Authority.
“We anticipate an enthusiastic turnout for the River Walk,” said WalkMalden’s Kevin Duffy, former Executive Director of Healthy Malden, the founding organization of WalkMalden. “The welcome mat is out for kids as well as adults.”
The group tour will start on a just-completed walkway by the river at 195 Canal Street. Officials from Combined Properties, the city, and the state will inaugurate the walkway, which was built for public use, in a ribbon-cutting ceremony. The completed walkway marks the final phase of the company’s transformation of the once-vacant 4.5-acre “brownfield” industrial site into an attractive modern office campus that today houses Cambridge Health Alliance’s Malden Family Medicine Center.
“We hope that our investment in revitalizing the property and creating the new public trail will allow the neighborhood and the city to better enjoy one of the area’s natural resources, the Malden River,” said Chris Maietta, Combined Properties V.P. of Business Development.
The company’s investment is reflected in the city’s assessment of the property’s value, rising from about $2 million prior to redevelopment to almost $10 million today.
The new walkway grew out of a public/private collaboration among Combined Properties, the state Department of Environmental Protection as overseer of the Chapter 91 waterways licensing program, and the state Department of Conservation and Recreation, which contributed access for a segment of the walkway to be built on their land. As construction was wrapping up this January, Malden Ward 1 Councilor Gary Christenson introduced a City Council measure whereby Combined Properties would deed to the city permanent access to the walkway for the benefit of the public. The Council voted unanimously in favor, and the measure was endorsed by Mayor Richard C. Howard.
Helping to plan this year’s River Walk are Anthony’s Restaurant, Bike to the Sea, the City of Malden, the Malden Redevelopment Authority, and Tri-CAP. Free parking for the River Walk will be available at 195 Canal Street and at neighboring Anthony’s Restaurant. Rain date is Sunday, May 22. More information is available at www.combinedproperties.com/riverwalk.html.