The Bennett Park Vision
For more than four decades, the most important spot welcoming visitors to the Village of Millbrook has become ever more blighted by the steady deterioration of the buildings that once comprised Bennett College. In 2021, with renovation of the Village’s historic Thorne Building into a community center already under way, the Millbrook Community Partnership, Inc. (MCP) saw – and seized upon – a once-in-a-century opportunity to reimagine two of the Village’s icons concurrently. After gaining title to the former Bennett campus, the MCP has begun the process of demolishing the buildings. In their stead, a new park will rise.
The MCP’s overarching vision is to connect the Thorne Building, which sits at the top of Franklin Avenue and will serve as a platform for a variety of indoor cultural activities, to the new Bennett Park, which sits at the bottom of Franklin Avenue and will serve as a platform for a variety of outdoor cultural activities. Each of these two historic sites sits on an axis with the Village’s third major public space, The Millbrook Tribute Garden and Village Green.
Establishment of the park on the former Bennett campus will make it possible for visitors and residents alike to walk or bike from Millbrook’s newest and largest public green space to the Tribute Garden, and from there up the gently sloping hill of Franklin Avenue to the Thorne Building Community Center, which will serve as the community’s cultural anchor and communal gathering space.
Bennett Park Conceptual Site Plan
What you will find at Bennett Park:
- 32 acres of beautifully landscaped parkland -
- Trails for walking and biking, connecting with existing trails that lead in to the Village -
- A visitors’ center -
- An outdoor venue for musical and theatrical performances -
Bennett Park Site at a Glance