Area 4 (The Port) is a high-density residential neighborhood with around 70,000 residents, bounded by Hampshire Street to the north, the Boston & Albany Railroad to the east, Prospect Street to the west, and Massachusetts Avenue to the south. It includes Central Square. The major commercial center and transit center in Area 4 lies in Central Square with the main commercial strip along the Massachusetts Avenue edge, while smaller commercial areas exist along Main Street, Prospect Street, and Hampshire Street. Most of Area 4 is residential in character. However, the triangle in the southern part of the neighborhood bounded by Massachusetts Avenue, Main Street and the Grand Junction Railroad (sometimes known as the Osborn Triangle) is a former industrial center now home to high-tech labs and offices, as well as facilities for the neighboring Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
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Central Square serves as the traditional downtown for Cambridge; at the same time, it plays many roles as a vibrant, mixed-use district. It is central in many ways – it is the seat of City government, it is mid-way between Harvard to the west and MIT to the east, and it is surrounded by dense, livable neighborhoods. (from City of Cambridge website)
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