Cemetery to get sign, lights

FOREST HILLS—The long, curving main drive for Forest Hills Cemetery soon will feature a cemetery sign for the first time, and Victorian-style streetlamps are coming by next year.

The historic cemetery at 95 Forest Hills Ave. is also nearing completion on renovation of the public restrooms in its dramatic, Gothic-style main gate at the drive’s end.

Ground broke this week on work for the new sign, which will be built of stone in imitation of the cemetery’s walls, according to CEO George Milley.

“We’re a 163-year-old cemetery that we feel never had a proper entrance sign,” said Milley, noting that the drive is beautiful, but, “There’s nothing to say, ‘Come up this street.’”

The sign, which will stand along Morton Street, will be lit at night and be surrounded by plantings. It should be up next month and is being funded by the foundation of the Salah family, which has relatives interred in the cemetery.

The cemetery hopes to add the streetlamps to the drive by late this year or early next year, Milley said. Intended to improve safety and further encourage people to go up the drive, they will be iron, gaslight-style lamps like those at Jamaica Pond Park, he said.

Meanwhile, the modern, handicapped-accessible public restrooms in the gate are already open. The old doors soon will be replaced with custom-made historically accurate versions, Milley said.

The stone, spire-tipped gate still needs restoration work that could cost $250,000, Milley said.

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