CPA Proposals & Projects

Newton City Hall

1000 Commonwealth Avenue, Newton Centre, MA 02459


Preserve, restore and rehabilitate key, character-defining historic features and significant historic artifacts held in Newton's 1932 Georgian-style City Hall, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and the surrounding landscape designed by the Olmsted Brothers firm, while also adapting this historic building to meet current community needs and accessibility standards.

See also City Archives page for related projects at several sites, including but not limited to City Hall.


$68,250  CPA funds currently requested
$386,150 CPA funds spent (all unspent balances returned to Community Preservation Fund)
$1,100,000- $3,200,000 additional CPA requests anticipated (based on Fy14-19 Capital Improvement Plans )

NOTE: Amounts above exclude the City-owned Civil War Monument, on the grounds of the private Newton Cemetery.



  • For building:
    Public Buildings Dept.
    City of Newton
    52 Elliot Street
    Newton Upper Falls, MA 02464
    Commissioner Joshua Morse,
    Project Manager Rafik Ayoub,
  • For historic art, artifacts & archives:
    City Clerk
    Newton City Hall
    1000 Commonwealth Avenue
    Newton Centre, MA 02459
  • For landscape:
    Commissioner of Parks & Recreation
    City of Newton
    246 Dudley Road
    Newton, MA 02459 &

Background on the Historic Significance of Newton City Hall

1997 - listing of Newton City Hall on the National Register of Historic Places

February 2012 - City Hall Historic Building Report - from CPA-funded series for all historic City buildings

City Hall & War Memorial Auditorium 


  • Exterior Stairs (2004 and 2019) - Rehabilitation of stonework and masonry, enhanced accessibility.

    Note: The 2004 study also included the municipal Civil War Monument, built of similar materials but located on the grounds of the nearby Newton Cemetery (private).
  • Acoustics & Accessibility - 2013-14 request for CPA funds to rehabilitate the War Memorial Auditorium by adding a new elevator and to improve acoustics in both the Auditorium and Aldermanic Chamber; this project was ultimately implemented with non-CPA funds


2004 assessment of War Memorial exterior stairs:
$15,000 CP funds appropriated & spent (historic resources)
2013-14 acoustics & accessibility project (final funding came only from non-CPA sources):
$80,000 federal (CDBG) funds spent
$749,950 CPA funds originally requested (historic resources)
$581,741 additional CPA funds that would have been requested if scope of work was expanded at CPC request
2019 exterior stairs historic rehabilitation & accessibility project
 CPA funding requested for conceptual design (historic resources)
 $2,332,000 additional CPA funding request anticipated for final design & construction
 $25,000 City non-CPA funding for project management by Public Buildings staff

Proposal Review & Appropriations

2013-15 War Memorial Acoustics & Accessibility

February-July 2013 - pre-proposal

18-20 December 2013 - corrected full proposal (orig. submission 15 November 2013):

additional background documents:

26 February 2013 - slide presentation to CPC public hearing

19-23 June 2014 - revised draft proposal, with potential expanded/alternative scope requested by the CPC (accessible exterior entrance and restrooms; exterior elevator as alternative option)

14 July 2014 - request for the CPC to hold this proposal temporarily

10 April 2015 - withdrawal of this proposal (project funded from non-CPA sources)

City Hall & War Memorial Exterior Stairs

15 October 2004 - War Memorial Stairs proposal (historic rehabilitation assessment)

30 March 2005 - War Memorial Stairs CPC funding recommendation (assessment)

16 May 2005 - War Memorial Stairs Board order (appropriation)

22 February 2019 - City Hall (Front) & War Memorial Exterior Stairs historic rehabilitation & accessibility pre-proposal for design services

  • On 12 March 2019 the CPC voted to consider an off-cycle full proposal for this project if it included a clear plan for additional non-CPA funding.

Project News & Results

War Memorial Exterior Stairs

June 2006 - Interim Assessment Report

June 2007 - Final Assessment Report, including recommendations (long file, may load slowly) and plans

City Hall Balustrade, Windows & Lighting 


Restore key, character-defining features of Newton's 1932 Georgian-style City Hall, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places: balustrade and cupola, arched wood windows (especially in the second-floor Aldermanic Chambers and War Memorial Auditorium); lighting in main public corridors.


$391,260 CPA funds appropriated 2003-04 (historic resources)
$330,500 CPA funds spent 2004-2008 (unspent balance returned to CP Fund)
$1,093,000 CPA funds to be requested as of 2012 (historic resources)

Proposal Review & Appropriations 


December 2002 - combined proposal for multiple features of City Hall (cupola & balustrade, windows, lighting)

8 January 2003 - revised proposal:

February 2003 -

7 April 2003 - CPC funding recommendation

May 2003-May 2004 - Board orders (appropriations):


3 July 2012 - City Hall historic windows pre-proposal  

2 November 2012 - The City of Newton postponed submission of a full proposal.

24 July 2013 - The CPC agreed to consider a full proposal once a prototype study has been completed to assess repair, restoration and replacement options for the various styles of historic windows in City Hall.

Project News

2003-04 - original project timelines

7 June 2013 - consultant assessment report on City Hall windows

City Hall Landscape 


Provide a phased plan for the preservation and rehabilitation of this award-winning landscape, designed and installed in 1931-32 by Henry Vincent Hubbard of the Olmsted Brothers firm to complement the Georgian design of Newton's new City Hall, with ponds fed by Cold Spring Brook.


$40,650 CPA funds appropriated & spent (historic resources), including $650 for City of Newton legal services

Proposal Review & Appropriations

27 April 2005 - preservation plan: CPC funding recommendation

20 June 2005 - preservation plan: Board order (appropriation)

8 August 2005 - Board order (appropriation), with supporting documents:

Project News 

October 2006 - Final Preservation Report & Recommendations (long files, may load slowly)


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