Worcester (colloquially pronounced “Woo-ster” or “Wista”), reinvigorated on the heels of booming Healthcare and Biotech industries, is now the second most populated city in New England, behind Boston and ahead of Providence. With its roots dating back to the 1600’s, it’s one of America’s oldest communities giving it that traditional colonial feel. The city’s centrality to both Massachusetts and greater New England offers Worcester apartment residents the unique opportunity to engage in a wide array of activities both local and afar. If that’s not enough, expect to feel welcomed with a whole heart as that is the city’s official symbol.
Worcester, like many of its neighboring cities in New England, is deep-rooted in American history, dating back to 1674. Aside from being a harbinger of news during the Revolutionary War, it was a major manufacturing hub and supplier for the United States through World War II. Following the decline in industrial jobs after the war, the city turned its sights on healthcare with an emphasis on biotechnology. These industries have made Worcester a destination for those who wish to study and practice in these fields with a growing number of medical schools and hospitals in recent years.
The weather here is mild in the summer with cold, long winters. There are many days of heavy rain and snow, but the region still manages to squeak in 200 days of sun per year. Due to Worcester’s proximity to the Atlantic Ocean, it is susceptible to the Nor'easter effect which can create very unpredictable conditions.
Getting Around Worcester
Most people prefer and depend on the reliability of owning a car in Worcester, the reason being that public transportation is limited and unreliable, many of the common destinations are widespread, and weather can be very unpredictable. If finding apartments in Worcester near public transit is a priority, the options include an intra-city bus service provided by the Worcester Regional Transit Authority (WRTA) or trains which depart from the newly restored Union Station and travels all the way to Boston.
Commuting in Worcester
Worcester is centrally located in Massachusetts, also making it the center of New England and the cross-section of many interstates. The local I-290 is positioned in the heart of the city and feeds to/from nearly 5 other major highways, providing easy, convenient access in any direction. I-190 breaks off and is the major freeway that takes commuters north of the city, while I-395 and I-90 will take you south and east-west (to Boston), respectively. A smaller, but still major roadway is the 146, which will take drivers southeast, directly to Providence.
The Worcester Telegram & Gazette (known locally as “The Telegram”) is Worcester's only daily newspaper. For stories and updates on the social scene, a monthly subscription of Pulse Magazine is also available. The relatively compact metropolitan area proximate to Boston and other heavily populated areas means that popular radio stations do get shared across the state, many coming from Boston. The most popular are WXKS-FM 107.9 – Kiss 108 – Pop, WKLB-FM 102.5 – Country, WBZ-FM 98.5 – Sports, and WICN-FM 90.5 - NPR.
Worcester apartments may be the most convenient place to live within New England as it is located in the dead-center of Massachusetts making an easy trip out to Vermont, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, and even Connecticut. If the location isn’t enough, then consider the expanding Biotech industry, which brings in thousands of jobs a year at both the academic and practitioner level. With the high concentration of universities (10 in total!) you can expect to be surrounded by highly educated, diverse neighbors who have relocated here from across the country.
Two main parks provide plentiful green space for those looking to find a natural asylum near their apartments in Worcester. Elm Park, to the west of downtown, entices with its 60 acres of architectural beauty, ponds, and skating in the winter. The larger Green Hill Park, just east of downtown, provides recreational areas for many different sports, walking trails, and even a zoo! Union Station, built in 1911 and now over 14,000 square feet, provides a unique point of interest directly in the center of the city. While its main purpose is to serve commuters, there is also a restaurant and lounge which cater to the nightlife community while providing a historical ambiance.
Things to do in Worcester
The EcoTarium provides a truly unique experience for those interested in the mix between natural and man-made environments. It educates from the immersive perspective only known to urban legends like Tarzan. Additionally, it serves a dual purpose as a planetarium, bringing the latest in multimedia technology to enhance the visitor’s experience. For those looking to for a fun night out on the town, head to Worcester’s northwest side where you will find a variety of bars and ethnic food from Japanese to Spanish tapas.
Every other year, Worcester’s St. Spyridon Greek Orthodox Cathedral provides food, music, shopping, and live dance performances at the biennial Grecian Festival. Held on the far east side of Elm Park, this festival combines traditional Greek culture with the city’s New England roots in a big way that brings in over 20,000 people during a 3 day weekend in June. Claiming to be the oldest music festival in the United States, the Worcester Music Festival which started in 1858, brings in world-renown artists to Mechanics Hall and WamsWorks each year from September through November.
Worcester Vacation spots
Being the center of New England has its perks, one being that your Worcester apartment will be no more than 3 and a half hours from Boston, New York, the Atlantic Coast, and some of the region’s best mountains for skiing and hiking in Vermont. Have a longer weekend and want to spend it internationally? You’re in luck as well! Montreal and Niagara Falls in Canada are only 5 and 6 hours away, respectively.
Where to move in Worcester
The nicest and safest neighborhoods tend to be on Worcester’s east side. Recommended Worcester apartments for those looking to be near school, work, or even raising a family should consider Shrewsbury and Westborough. The school systems in these neighborhoods provide some of the city’s best education and include numerous universities and hospitals nearby catering to the medical professionals. If the west side is more convenient, Paxton provides some of the best value for nice apartments in Worcester.