Pittsburgh Botanic Garden broke ground on a new Welcome Center with a sustainable Auto Garden and the Garden of the Five Senses. 

“This is an exciting new chapter in the evolution of our organization,” said Keith S. Kaiser, Executive Director, during the Soil Turning Ceremony. “We are surging forward, providing opportunities for our growing visitation and membership.”

The 7,500 square-foot Welcome Center will feature an admissions desk, gift shop and café while allowing the Garden to expand its educational programming and event capacity. An Auto Garden will sit between the entrance and the Welcome Center and will add additional guest parking and a seasonal walkway. 

“The underlying goal of these projects is to enhance the visitor experience,” noted Keith. “From the moment they enter Pittsburgh Botanic Garden, guests will be immersed in the natural beauty of our region. From viewing the tree canopy from the deck of the café to exploring the woodlands as a group or family, guests will be able to connect with nature and gain an understanding of all its wonder.” 

Yet another project in progress is the Garden of the Five Senses. This whimsical and interactive garden will appeal to an audience of all ages and abilities. Along a pathway, a series of stations will connect guests to nature through one of their senses. These senses include touch, hearing, sight, smell and taste, as well as the additional vestibular (balance, movement, and spatial orientation) and proprioceptive (awareness and movement of one’s body in space) senses. 

Construction is slated to begin August 2019 and all three project are anticipated to be completed in 2020. The Garden will remain open to the public for the duration of the project, utilizing the existing Bayer Welcome Center and parking. After completion of the new Welcome Center, the Bayer Welcome Center will continue to provide event space for special occasions and private rentals.