The Esplanade Association’s efforts to significantly improve the landscape of one of Boston’s most treasured parks have been given a big boost.
The organization has announced that it has received an award in the amount of $1 million to help revitalize and re-landscape the Eliot Memorial area on the Esplanade, as well as aid in improving and maintaining the park’s overall landscape.
“The size and nature of the award are a wonderful vote of confidence in our work and our vision for the Esplanade,” said Margo Newman, chair of The Esplanade Association’s board of directors.
This award is made in memory of Francis W. Hatch Jr., a noted environmentalist and humanitarian who served as a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives in the 1960s and 1970s and as the Minority Leader from 1971 to 1979. Hatch authored the Hatch Act, the state’s 1965 landmark wetlands protection law. He served on the boards of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and the John Merck Fund and was a supporter of many wonderful efforts to protect and improve our natural environment. Hatch died in April of 2010.
“This very generous gift will be used by The Esplanade Association to help make the Esplanade greener and healthier as well as increase the organization’s capacity to engage a broader community in efforts to improve the park,” said Sylvia Salas, the organization’s executive director. “TEA is honored to receive this award in memory of Mr. Hatch and for the betterment of Boston.”
The organization has been working closely with the Department of Conservation and Recreation and a team of landscapers, designers, horticulturists and interested citizens to plan and design a Landscape Demonstration Project at the Eliot Memorial. This project will beautify and restore the health of the landscape at this popular area of the park and will serve, also, as a blueprint for future landscape projects. Revitalization of the Eliot Memorial is one of numerous improvements recommended in the Esplanade 2020 study, which is nearing completion.