Your Watershed

The Neponset River Watershed includes roughly 130 square miles of land southwest of Boston. All of this land drains into the Neponset River, and ultimately into Boston Harbor.

What is a Watershed?

  • A watershed is the area of land that drains into a body of water, like a river, pond, harbor or lake.
  • A watershed is sometimes referred to as a “river basin,” a “river valley,” or a “drainage basin.”
  • A watershed might contain a variety of landscapes, ecosystems, and man-made structures.  They come in all sizes and may contain multiple towns, just a few houses, or none at all!
watershed diagram

Click on image to see an example of a watershed.

Our watershed – aka the area of land that drains into the Neponset River – is made up of a striking array of landscapes, habitats and species – despite 10,000 years of human habitation and over 375 years of industrialization.  Notable features of the Watershed include:

  • the 30 mile long Neponset River
  • Fowl Meadow
  • Blue Hills
  • Baker Dam
  • Tileston and Hollingsworth Dam
  • the Neponset Estuary
  • Neponset RiverWalk and Greenway
  • Squantum Point Park

Where is the Neponset River Watershed?

  • The River starts in Foxborough, near Gillette Stadium, and ends in Dorchester/Quincy, near the “Rainbow Swash” gas tank by I-93.
  • The Neponset River runs for 30 miles through the middle of the watershed.
  • Roughly 300,000 people live in the watershed.
Neponset River Watershed

Click on map for larger view.

The Watershed includes parts of 14 cities and towns:

  • Boston (Dorchester, Hyde Park, Mattapan)
  • Canton
  • Dedham
  • Dover
  • Foxborough
  • Medfield
  • Milton
  • Norwood
  • Quincy
  • Randolph
  • Sharon
  • Stoughton
  • Walpole
  • Westwood