Parks group moves to Arborway

August 28, 2008
By

JOHN RUCH

PONDSIDE—The Emerald Necklace Conservancy (ENC), an influential parks advocacy organization, moved last month from Brookline to the Arborway.

“We’re very excited about moving there, right on the Emerald Necklace,” said ENC President Julie Crockford.

The ENC said has outgrown its former headquarters in a Brookline storefront—a building that is also about to be redeveloped by Children’s Hospital Boston. On July 30, it moved into the former Boy Scouts of America building at 891 Centre St. at the intersection with the Arborway. It is one of several tenants in the commercial office building.

The move to Jamaica Plain is only temporary, Crockford said. ENC is raising funds to renovate a former waterworks gatehouse in the Back Bay Fens into its headquarters and education center. Crockford estimated that move will happen in about 18 months.

The Emerald Necklace is the nickname for the string of historic city parks that runs around Boston (and partly in Brookline). JP-area “jewels” in the Necklace include Jamaica Pond Park, Arnold Arboretum, Franklin Park and Olmsted Park. Historic state parkways, including the Arborway and the Jamaicaway, connect some of the parks.

“It was important to me that we be as close to the parks as possible,” said Crockford, noting that the building sits on the Arborway across the street from the arboretum.

The ENC is a nonprofit, public-private partnership founded in 1996 to support Emerald Necklace restoration efforts and conduct educational programs. Its current programs include the restoration of the Olmsted Park woodlands and outdoor movie screenings at Jamaica Pond Park.

The ENC has a new phone number: 522-2700. For more information, see www.EmeraldNecklace.org.