Though The Morton Arboretum has acted as the champion of trees for more than 90 years, we know a greener future relies on constant improvement. Visitors may notice the following projects currently underway at our 1,700-acre tree museum. Each will help us do our best work, and provide you with the best experience, for many more decades. We thank you for your support as we work to complete them.
The Arboretum is replacing the workspace that is currently housed in the Annex and Outpost (both near Parking Lot 21). The renovation project includes removing the Annex and the Outpost and adding a new building that combines the staff functions of both buildings in the approximate former location of the Outpost. The Annex-Outpost projected began in spring 2017 and is expected to be completed in late fall 2017.
Vital restoration is underway along more than 1.5 miles of the East Branch of the DuPage River as it flows through the Arboretum. The project involves re-grading the artificially steep, badly eroded banks to give them a more natural, gentle slope. Invasive plants that choked the old river banks have been removed, and the banks were planted with a variety of native plants, including more than 850 new trees. Major work, including grading the banks, began in the fall of 2015 and is scheduled to end in the fall of 2017. Over the next few years, work will continue to add native trees, grasses, wildflowers, and other plants and to monitor as new ecosystems get established within and along the river.
Beginning in the fall 2017, the Arboretum is expanding Wonder Pond (for an even bigger splash!) and updating the picnic pavilion where families participate in educational programming (or simply recharge and relax). We are touching up the Children's Garden’s entrance so it is even more visible and welcoming—a great place to begin your journeys. Tentative completion is spring 2018.