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Polly Hill Arboretum

Visitors Center

Martha’s Vineyard, MA

Client: The Polly Hill Arboretum

Scope: Two buildings: gift shop and public gathering space in one; second houses public restrooms.

Framed with Douglas fir, these simple, airy boxes nestle into the woodlands of this beloved island nature sanctuary. For the interior of the main building, we designed furniture that can be moved and reconfigured as needs dictate. The space is a gift shop and information center during the day; at night it can be adapted for lectures and presentations. Each building has large roof overhangs that offer shading and protection from rough weather. Awning windows allow in island breezes. A rustic trellis topped with native locust boughs links the two buildings.

Materials: Cast-in-place pigmented concrete; flagstone; larch (exterior columns); black locust (bower); Douglas fir heavy timber frame; cedar shingles and windows; fieldstone.

 

Awards
American Institute of Architects New England, Merit Award for Design Excellence
Boston Society of Architects, Design Honor Award

 

Collaborators
Landscape Architect:  Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates, Inc
Structural Engineer:  Ocmulgee Associates

 

Photographer: Chuck Choi Architectural Photography