Arnold Arboretum Entrance Improvement Project Viewing

Special to the Gazette

Engage with the future at the Arnold Arboretum! Through March 6, view a temporary exhibit in the Hunnewell Building illuminating the Entrance Improvement Project, a phased initiative to renovate all the Arboretum entrances and provide a safer, more accessible, and more welcoming experience for the visiting public.

Each day, the Arnold Arboretum welcomes visitors to explore via a number of gates and less formal entrances located around the three-mile perimeter of its 281-acre landscape. In keeping with the Arboretum’s legacy as one of Boston’s first completely free cultural institutions, these portals provide free and open access throughout the year, from dawn to dusk. Over time, shifts in transportation needs, capacity for maintenance, and availability of resources have made these access points highly variable in design, aesthetics, and ease of passage. Through the Entrance Improvement Project, the Arboretum aspires to improve how all visitors experience the landscape as part of its historical commitment to visitor engagement and green space equity.

Phase 1 of the project will focus on renovations to five Arboretum entrances: Arborway Gate, Beech Path Gate (on South Street), Poplar Gate (at intersection of South and Bussey Streets), Walter Street Gate, and Washington Street Gate (opposite the Forest Hills MBTA Station). Over the course of 2023, staff will gather information from the public and multiple state and local agencies to assess current conditions and design proposals.

Visit the Arnold Arboretum Visitor Center from 10am-4pm through March 6 to study the concept designs for Phase 1 and provide feedback. If you are unable to visit the exhibit in person, you can learn more about the project and contribute feedback online.

Founded in 1872 as the first public arboretum in North America, the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University is a leading center for the study of biodiversity and a treasured Boston landscape open free to the public year round. One of the most comprehensive and best-documented collections of temperate woody plants in the world, the Arboretum promotes the understanding and appreciation of plants through world-class research, horticulture, and educational programs for all ages.

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