Somerville’s New Allen Street Playground Now Open; Renovated Community Gardens Available This Spring

A new playground is now open for some of Somerville’s youngest residents near Union Square. The Allen Street Garden and Pocket Park, which officially opened last month with a COVID-compliant ribbon-cutting ceremony, now features imaginative and engaging play structures for kids aged 2 through 5, as well as renovated community garden facilities.

Once a vacant lot, the Allen Street gardens were built in 2007 after a community-driven campaign to transform the site into a green space. In 2016, Community Preservation Act funds were awarded to redevelop the site to incorporate a small playground, and construction began in 2019. A welcome oasis in this densely populated neighborhood, the gardens will now provide a safe, dedicated recreation space for children and families, in particular the CAAS Head Start students across the street.

In addition to the playground, the renovated site features new garden plots, wheelchair-accessible plant beds, a larger shed, a plaza space with cafe tables and a water bottle filler, permeable playground surfaces that allow for the infiltration of stormwater, and wider, more accessible sidewalks along the street. The gardens will be returned to gardeners for planting this spring. Learn more about the space at SomervilleMA.gov/AllenStreetPlayground.