Powder House Square is within walking distance of Davis Square and is also located next to Tufts University near the Medford/Somerville line. The square is located at the intersection of Powder House Boulevard, College Avenue, Warner Street and Broadway. Sometimes referred to as Powder House Circle, the square features a small park located inside the traffic circle, complete with landscaping and walkways.
During the early 1700s, a local resident built a windmill on the site. In 1747, the windmill was sold to the government and transformed into a powder house, giving the square its current name. After the Boston Tea Party, British troops arrived to forcibly seize the gunpowder stored there, making Powder House Square one of the earliest confrontations (albeit a bloodless one) in the Revolutionary War.
After the war, Massachusetts sold the land on which the powder house was built to Peter Tufts. (Another Tufts family member, Charles, made the initial donation of land used to found Tufts University.) The Tufts family donated the land and the powder house to the city of Somerville in 1890. Three years later, Nathan Tufts Park was established, and today, both the powder house and the surrounding park appear on the National Register of Historic Places.
The Powder House Square neighborhood is served by several MBTA bus lines. Access to rail transportation is conveniently located in Davis Square via the Red Line, and a proposed extension to the Green Line would bring additional access at Ball Square.
Powder House Square is home to a variety of businesses and shops as well as restaurants, which range from ice cream parlors and bakeries to diners and pizza parlors. Apartments and condos can be found in the surrounding neighborhood at affordable prices, making the area popular with students attending Tufts University as well as young families seeking rental properties. However, condos and single-family homes for sale in the area can also be found at affordable prices.