Maplewood Nature Center and Playground Project

This project includes converting the existing City of Rochester Training and Safety facility into the Maplewood Nature Center, construction of a new playground adjacent to the nature center, installation of two open-air park shelters, and associated site work.  

Maplewood facility


The Maplewood Training Center was built in 1945 in Upper Maplewood Park.  Maplewood Park was designed by Frederick Law Olmsted to highlight the Genesee River.  This building has been repurposed a number of times and has previously been the home for a recreation center and a police station.  Currently, the building serves as the Training and Safety facility, as well as housing police motorcycles.

The City of Rochester offers a number of nature and environmental education programs, but lacks a hub or facility equipped to provide this specialized programming in a comprehensive manner.  There are no nature centers within City limits and there is limited activation of the riverway trail system north of downtown.  There also is a lack of R-Centers in the northwest.  The proposed Nature Center would provide an activated connection between the Genesee River and eco-system beyond the Center City, build upon Rochester's deliberate work to become a more active and playable city, and renew focus on activation of the Rochester riverfront.

The Rochester 2034 Comprehensive Plan supports the revitalization of this asset into a "river-oriented Nature Center that could be part of a larger network of river and urban ecology-oriented facilities along the Genesee."


Public Meeting #1 Presentation Boards (May 2, 2023)

Public Meeting #2 Presentation Boards (Oct 19, 2023)


For questions or comments on this project, please contact Laura Civiletti in the City’s Bureau of Architecture and Engineering at 585-428-7742 or by email