Dedham Campus Plan
The Animal Rescue League of Boston was founded in 1899 by a social worker and humanitarian, Anna Harris Smith. In 1907, Anna purchased the Chamberlain Farm on Pine St. Dedham as a country annex to care for small animals awaiting placement and to provide working horses respite. For the past 112 years, ARL’s Dedham campus has served as a sanctuary for animals and a resource for the community.
Anna Harris Smith
Today, the campus houses an Animal Care & Adoption Center, a historic pet cemetery, dog training, program management in the founder’s former bungalow and, a barn and paddocks supporting horses and other livestock rescued from animal cruelty or neglect.
ARL is licensed by the town of Dedham for a 25-dog kennel and a barn. Additionally, through contractual agreement, the Animal Care and Adoption Center serves as the stray dog facility for Dedham; saving the town the expense of operating a municipal shelter.
About the Project
In 2018, ARL commissioned a masterplan for the campus; assessing site conditions and capacity. The plan supported the addition of an administrative building and training facility, reconfiguration of the roadways, and relocation of the current maintenance garage.
The administrative building will provide a consolidated facility for program management, now located on the campus and administrative staff now housed in Boston. The training facility will support dog training (a current program) and staff meetings, professional trainings, and donor functions. The space will also be made available as a community meeting space.
The project was also carefully designed as not to disturb the existing animal graves in Pine Ridge Cemetery.
Through both the masterplan and design phases ARL has taken great care to respect the rural feel and historic legacy of this campus. The design of the administrative building has an intention and esthetic reminiscent of a traditional New England farmhouse cluster. Wood exteriors, lush landscaping with native plantings and building mass distributed in three sections are all geared to create an architecturally beautiful design that blends into the landscape set back from Pine St.