The Arboretum at Penn State

The Future

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Looking toward the Arboretum complex from Park Avenue

The master plan for the H.O. Smith Botanic Gardens, updated in 2008 by MTR Landscape Architects, includes additional gardens for future development. Ultimately, these gardens will fill in and around the current elements in the H.O. Smith Botanic Gardens, and transform the slope from the Overlook Pavilion to the Hartley Wood—providing approximately 25 more acres of cultivated displays and garden demonstration areas.

A design study by GUND Partnership finished in 2013 updated the master plan with schematic designs and construction cost estimates for the Education Center and Conservatory as well as a Planetarium that had not been part of previous plans. The revised master plan presents a vision for a truly stunning facility that combines three buildings, each a separate fundraising project, connected by “the corridor of time”—highlighting major points in the evolution of our landscape—and an exhibit hall illustrating the symbiotic relationship between our natural environment, the atmosphere, and the cosmos. Philanthropy will determine the pace of development.