City Hall Park

 2018 plan as submitted to DAB

2018 plan as submitted to DAB

City Hall Park has been part of downtown’s urban fabric since the founding of Burlington. Over the years, it has evolved in shape, size and use as the needs of our community have changed. 

This plan combines the work and recommendations of the Imagine City Hall Park (completed in 2012), with additional input from the Great Streets Initiative to increase the public use and enjoyment of the park throughout the year. Through the Great Streets Initiative, we will refine the conceptual design and move it through to construction.

The plan above prioritizes a healthy, functioning urban park; accessibility for all users, in all seasons; and the enhancement of our historic park to meet the modern needs of our community. Key elements of the plan include:

  • The healthiest trees are maintained, and some in declining health are intended to be rejuvenated during construction. Soil conditions are repaired to support new and existing trees, and two rain gardens mitigate stormwater runoff and soil erosion.
  • Pathways maintain the historic connectivity across the park to each of the corners and edges, intersecting near a central water feature. Paths have been realigned slightly from their current location so that the grades are less steep, in locations which limit impacts on some of the healthiest trees, and to serve the modern maintenance needs of the park.
  • The flexible spaces organized along these pathways accommodate a variety of activities such as small performances, a wide range of seating types, the artist market, and a central gathering area with an interactive fountain. This allows for infrastructure which supports these activities to be condensed and incorporated into hardscape areas, retaining maximum un-programmed space and limiting future soil compaction from these activities encroaching on the lawn.
  • The Park continues to serve as the home of the Burlington Farmer’s Market. However, booths are relocated to the streets and sidewalks on the edges of the park so that the central lawn may be used for seating and other uses on market days, and to avoid damaging the lawn again in the future.
  • Areas have been identified for the addition of a vending kiosk and a standalone restroom facility in the future so that these amenities can be tested before being installed permanently.
  • Rather than an ornamental fountain element with a basin, an interactive fountain is incorporated into the central gathering space. In addition to creating an active space for play, this fountain can provide visual interest and white noise, as well as incorporate lights for ambiance and art in ways the current fountain doesn’t allow.
  • Terraced areas along the buildings in the northeast corner of the park connect the historic buildings to the park space, activate an otherwise shaded and unused part of the park, and create flexible space for seating and other temporary activities.
  • The southern edge of the park features a seat wall, which frames the park and helps manage the complex stormwater management challenges along Main Street.


Learn more about the City Hall Park Concept Plan:
City Hall Park Design Frequently Asked Questions
Tree Health Assessment Map (8MB)
CHP Presentation SHORT: Fall 2017 Live @ 5:25 Discussion
CHP Presentation LONG: August 14 Recording
Plan Submissions to DAB: January 23, 2018 (8.5 MB)
Plan Submissions to DRB: February 20, 2018 (16.8 MB)
Plan Submissions to DRB: March 7, 2018 (16.3 MB)