Missouri Botanical Garden in St. Louis, Missouri is investing $92 million in a new visitor centre. The ‘gateway to the garden’ project is designed to enhance the guest experience.
The attraction is named the Jack C Taylor Visitor Center. It will embrace the concept of sustainability and will transport guests to the gardens.
As guests enter, they’ll be met with views of the gardens and fountains. The entrance will be more accessible with benches, wide pathways and extra drop-off areas.
The new centre will also provide more space for meetings and events, as well as a separate area for large private events and conferences.
Jack C Taylor Visitor Center opening in 2022
“As a global leader in plant science, and as an important cultural institution, we must raise our physical visibility with a face that matches what is inside the Garden, and improves understanding of our mission, research and impact,” said Missouri Botanical Garden president Peter Wyse Jackson.
“This will create a new treasure for St. Louis and further build the region’s reputation as a hub of research and innovation.”
The shop will sell outdoor plants, while dining options will include a grab-and-go location and a café with views of the gardens.
Entrance to gardens will be more accessible
The current visitor centre opened in 1982, and was built to accommodate 250,000 annual visitors. However, the gardens receive nearly 1 millions visitors each year.
Construction on the privately funded project is scheduled to start in January 2020, with completion set for spring 2022. The gardens will stay open throughout construction.
“We are fortunate to be a part of the St. Louis community whose generosity enabled this project to be privately funded with no taxpayer money,” added Wyse Jackson.
Visitors will be met with views of gardens and fountains
— MO Botanical Garden (@mobotgarden) October 22, 2019
“The support of our donors will help enhance our members’ experiences and usher in new generations of people to experience the joy and beauty of our amazing planet.”
Landscape architect Michael Vergason and architect Ayers Saint Gross have partnered with construction manager Alberici on the project.
Elsewhere, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh‘s £70m plans have been given the go-ahead. The institution will add state-of-the-art facilities and enhance the visitor experience.
Images: Missouri Botanical Garden