Dolan Pond


A wetlands area traversed by paths, boardwalks, and foot bridges. There are four small ponds in all.

Walking, bird watching, nature study, and ice skating. A biodiversity study in 2000 found 120 plant, animal, and insect varieties. Red maple swamp with netted chain fern, round-leaved sundew, swamp milkweed, poison sumac, and cotton grass abound. Birdwatchers have spotted over 130 species of birds near Dolan Pond.

Wheelchair iconThe boardwalk and trail system is wheelchair-accessible.


Size: 8 acres    Longest Walk: 0.4 miles    Acquired: 1979 and 2004



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Get here by MBTA: A 10 minute walk from West Newton, which is served by commuter rail and many bus lines.

Other maps and aerial photos: Bing Maps bird’s-eye view Newton Assessor

Trail Map

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GPS Enabled Trail Map

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Owner & Administrator Websites

Photo Gallery

First three photos shown here. Click a photo to view the complete slideshow or click here to browse the complete gallery.


The western part was owned by Charles Dolan. The eastern end of Quinn Pond (Secret Pond) was owned by Catherine Quinn. The area was at one time slated for housing plots.

Dolan Pond and the surrounding area was once intended for residential development. The parcels outlined in red could have been developed. The area shaded in green is now part of the conservation area.


The City took by eminent domain the privately owned portions with partial reimbursement from state self-help funds.


Installation of new wheelchair-accessible paths and boardwalks.


Community Preservation Act funds used to acquire additional land from the Forte estate to be added to the park; CPA funds also used to support work by Habitat for Humanity to rehabilitate the Forte home and build additional affordable housing.


Accessible Trails, Birding, Conservation Area, Ice Skating, Pond, Vernal Pool, Woods Trail

Additional Information

Newton Assessor’s Map ID: 33017 0015 and other parcels

Advocates & Caretakers:

Friends of Dolan Pond 24 Henshaw Terrace West Newton, MA 02465 dolanpond@aol.com

Acquisition of Forte property:

Initial report (August 2003)

November 2003 update

May and September 2004 updates

Other Information:

Hidden Gem of West Newton (Fall 2017 Newsletter article)

Nature at Dolan Pond