Inn Street Fountain Restoration & Splash Pad Project

Inn Street Fountain Splash Pad Spray Park
Project Updates:

5/20/16:  The visit from Delta Fountains last week went well and the fountain is operational.  The certified pool operators (CPO)were back at the site today testing the system.  The CPO will be back over the next couple of weeks running and testing the system but it will not be in full operation until after the ribbon cutting ceremony on June 4th.  The fence has been taken down and the porta-potty will be removed today.  Flowers will be planted in the boxes along the raised walkway on Inn Street at the beginning of next week.

5/9/16:  Last week the two tree wells in front of Smitten were reconstructed last week and the remaining brickwork was complete over the project limits of the Fountain Restoration and Splash Pad Project.  The contractor begin installing the grates to the fountain drain and catch basin frames were installed.  This week Delta Fountains will be on site Tuesday afternoon and throughout the day Wednesday to flush and test the fountain as well as install the controls and operating equipment.  They will also be spending time with a Certified Pool Operator and select city officials to review the fountain’s operation and maintenance.

After Delta’s departure the granite boulders will be returned to the site.

4/25/16:  The final construction phase of the Inn Street Fountain and Splash Pad construction is well underway.  Construction last week included removing and stack additional brick, setting pavement, the  tree well adjacent to Smitten was reworked, and the contractor begin relaying bricks.  The electrician was also onsite installing tree up-lights and placing fountain lights, nozzles and plates on columns.  Today work will be done on the main Inn Street strip, tomorrow the bricks directly in front of Inn Street will be pulled up and the tree wells will be worked on and paving is scheduled for Wednesday morning in that area.  Once pavement is down brickwork will continue.

4/15/16:  The Inn Street Fountain and Splash Pad construction completed this past week was as follows:

  • Granite pavers were set
  • Site backfilled and compacted
  • Remaining bollards installed
  • Continued electrical/plumbing work

Starting Tuesday morning the contractor will begin brick work on Inn Street.  To minimize disturbance he will begin in the rear by the alley way next to the stairwells and work his way forward in sections.  The existing bricks will be pulled up and stacked, site regraded as necessary and then pavement will be set.  As the bricks are being re-laid the immediate sections will be closed off. 

4/11/16:  The Inn Street Fountain and Splash Pad construction has continued over the past couple of weeks.  Work completed has been as follows:

  • Four of the bollards set back in place
  • Additional concrete pads and concrete base for splash pad poured
  • River rock set at splash pad base
  • Continued electrical work

It is anticipated that the work will continue this week and the following will be accomplished:

  • Granite pavers will be set
  • Site backfilled and compacted
  • Remaining bollards installed
  • Continued electrical/plumbing work.

3/23/16:  Progress on Inn Street has continued over the past couple of weeks (despite a slight interruption due to snow).  Work completed has been as follows:

  • Trench drains and pop us jets set in place
  • Curbing for access ramp installed
  • Concrete base for granite landings and boulders poured
  • Granite landings laid
  • Continued electrical work
  • Received brass column plates, nozzles, and light fixtures back from Delta

On March 16, 2016, Hannah Carlson from Horsley Witten Group visited the site along with Mike Hathaway from Hathaway Landscape (Arborist) to review the placement of the spray jets, perform a general inspection, review outstanding required mockups and material samples and to discuss the best course of protect and nursih the existing trees.  Anticipated work on Inn Street for the remainder of this week and next is to:

  • Install Bollards
  • Pour additional concrete pads and concrete base for splash pad
  • Masonry work within fountain limits

3/2/16:  Over the past couple months the remaining fountain components were ordered and instrumental construction details finalized.  Last week Scott Johnston from Delta Fountains in Florida was on site to meet with a wide range of City officials and the Contractor and Subcontractors to perform an inspection of the fountain installation and to answer outstanding construction questions and concerns.  He will make two additional site visits during which time he will train staff on daily and seasonal operation and maintenance.

1/11/16:  Work on the Inn Street Fountain and Splash pad has been relatively quiet over the past couple of weeks and will remain so for the next few weeks.

Construction activities on Inn Street were as follows:

  • The Electrician was on site at the Inn Street Fountain the to run wires between the equipment vaults and the fountains themselves as well as into an electrical box beneath Smitten. 
  • The green scrim was taken off from the construction fencing.

12/18/15:  Last week’s construction activities on Inn Street were as follows:

  • Electrician and plumber continued installing lines between fountain equipment components.
  • Site backfilled as electrician and plumber completed portions of their work.
  • Curbing installed around splash pad perimeter.

This upcoming week next week's anticipated schedule is as follows:

  • Continuation of plumbing and electrical work.
  • Granite steps reset.
  • Set additional curbing and finished stonework.

12/11/15:  This past week’s construction activities on Inn Street were as follows:

  • Electrician and plumber continued installing lines between fountain equipment components. (Electrical redesign strategies were successful!) 

Next weeks anticipated schedule is as follows:

  • Continuation of electrical and plumbing lines.  Site will be backfilled as work progresses.

12/4/15:  This past week’s construction activities on Inn Street were as follows:

  • Meetings between City, Contractor, and Electrician to resolve electrical installation obstacles.  Electrical contractor worked with City Engineer to resolve such issues and at this time have been approved by the City.

Next weeks anticipated schedule is as follows:

  • Electrician to restart work Monday to run electrical lines from Fountain equipment to the fountain pillars. 
  • Upon completion of electrical work and installation of trench drain the site will be backfilled and rough graded for winter.

As long as weather continues to cooperate the Contractor plans on having his subcontractors continuing their work on the Fountain.  Once site is backfilled there will no longer be heavy equipment on Inn Street but you should anticipate to see the electrician and plumber and possibly a representative from the fountain designer, Delta Fountains. 

11/20/15:  Trenching continued on Inn Street yesterday without any significant problems.  The remaining drainage structures and drain pipe were installed and the broken conduits were repaired by the City of Newburyport’s Electrician.  The trenches were backfilled and compacted and area graded.  Exposed areas on Inn Street were paved this afternoon and the pedestrian access to Inn Street was opened up just in time for the weekend.

Next week’s anticipated schedule is as follows:

  • Plumber will continue pipe installation.
  • Additional fountain system parts will be  secured.

11/18/15:  Due to the water main’s location on Inn Street the proposed utilities could not be laid out as originally planned.  An alternative drainage design was completed late Friday and into early Monday.   To ensure this concept would work, the Contractor began carefully trenching Inn Street yesterday afternoon.  Unfortunately an old water service, that was still attached to the main water line,  was encountered and as it was pulled from the main line left a hole.  The location and purpose of this line was unknown to all parties.   The contractor worked quickly to uncover the source and the City’s Water Division was called to plug the water main.  In order to do so the water was temporarily turned off which left a majority of Inn Street without water.  Thankfully it was a relatively quick fix and with the collaboration of the Contractor and Water Department they were able to get Inn Street back up and running.  Trenching will continue today and fingers crossed that there are no more unknowns!  It is anticipated that the utility work will be completed by the middle of next week and the fencing will be scaled back to the granite steps which will open Inn Street back up to pedestrian access.  The plumber has also been onsite working this week and will continue to do so.

11/13/15:  This past week’s construction activities on Inn Street were as follows:

  • Plumber began running pipe between fountain equipment. (Delayed due to inclement weather Wednesday and Thursday)
  • Catch basin and drain manhole structures were delivered to the site and installed.

Next weeks anticipated schedule is as follows:

  • Plumber will continue pipe installation.
  • Drainage pipe to be installed between installed structures and connect to existing drainage system on Inn Street.

11/6/15:  This past week’s construction activities on Inn Street were as follows:

  • New water service, meter pit and backflow on Inn Street installed.  The old fountain equipment components were removed.
  • Electrician on site to tie in backflow preventer and fix broken conduit.  Brought Electrical lines up from rear of large vault to approximate grad level so that pit may be backfilled.
  • The collector and dechlorination tanks were lowered onto pads the leveling pads.  The three anchor pads were formed and concrete poured for each tank.
  • Trench boxes were dismantled and each component raised from pits and removed from site.  Site was cleared of unsuitable fill and pits were backfilled with sand.
  • Fencing returned to original location.

Next weeks anticipated schedule is as follows:

  • Contractor will be off site Monday and Tuesday.
  • Plumber will be onsite Wednesday and work through the remainder of the week.

11/2/15:  Last week’s construction on Inn Street activities completed were as follows:

  • Excavation of pit for Dechlorination tank complete.
  • Concrete leveling pads for each of the three fountain equipment tanks were constructed.
  • Fountain Equipment brought to site and Subterranean Equipment Vault placed on pad.                                        

Next weeks anticipated schedule is as follows:

  • New Water Service from main Line on Inn Street to be installed.  Please note that the section of walkway between the two construction fence gates will be closed off for a day or two (most likely Tuesday and Wednesday).  Pedestrians will be directed through common area off Green Street Parking Lot.
  • Collector and Dechlorination tanks to be lowered onto pads.

10/23/15:  Last week’s construction on Inn Street activities completed were as follows:

  • Excavation of large pit for installation of fountain equipment complete.
  • Crane used to lower  trench box into excavated hole Tuesday Morning.
  • Fountain Equipment was examined and measured at Crow Lane.
  • Site was surveyed and locations and elevations of fountain equipment verified.

Next weeks anticipated schedule is as follows:

  • Forms for leveling pads will be constructed Saturday morning.  All work to remain within fenced limits.
  • Concrete will be poured for first of leveling pads early in the week.  Pit will then be back filled to elevation of second leveling pad and then that pad will be constructed. (Concrete truck will be onsite)
  • Fountain Equipment to be brought to site and placed on pads.  

10/19/15:  Last week’s construction on Inn Street began with the Ground Breaking Ceremony on Tuesday morning.  Construction activities completed were as follows:

  • Remaining bricks, bollards, and the top row of granite steps were moved off site and stored.
  • Granite blocks were numbered according to the design plan and moved off site and stored.
  • Concrete block foundation was broken up and disposed.
  • Subsurface near location of stair turret was explored – no need for shoring as foundation extends 12+ feet below existing ground elevation.
  • Trench Box delivered to site.
  • Excavation for installation of large vault for fountain equipment began.

This weeks anticipated schedule is as follows:

  • Excavation for installation of large vault for fountain equipment
  • On Tuesday, October 20, 2015, a crane will be on site at 7:00 am to pick up trench box and lower into excavated hole.
  • Concrete will be poured for Leveling pad on either Wednesday or Thursday.
  • Fountain Equipment for large vault brought to site and placed.

10/9/15:  The Inn Street project began construction this week.  The site perimeter was fenced in and “Business Open During Construction” and “Stair Access ->” signs were hung.  A little tree pruning along the access was done in order to not damage the trees.  Hartnett Construction removed the existing bricks and benches and stored for later use. 

Next week will kick off with a Ground Breaking Ceremony on Tuesday, October 13th at 11:00 – all are welcomed to attend.

10/6/15:  The Inn Street Fountain Restoration and Splash Pad project started today.  Natural Fence erected the fencing first thing this morning and J.D. Hartnett and Sons plans to begin removing bricks today to get the project underway.  The Contractor was contacted this afternoon in regards to the contracted signage. The request for additional signage is being explored at this time.


The City of Newburyport began construction work related to the renovation of the historic Inn Street Fountain beginning the week of September 21st, 2015. A public informational meeting was held on September 17th, 2015 to review the project and address any questions from abutting businesses, residents and the general public. The City has coordinated the location of construction site security fencing around the work area, but pedestrian access will be maintained during the project, which is expected to be substantially complete by mid to late November of this year, with final paving (brick) work completed in Spring 2016. At certain limited times during the months of September, October, and/or November large equipment will need to be delivered to the site and placed in the ground around the existing fountain. 

We ask for your patience as the City completes this important project that will help to restore and revitalize Inn Street and we will return the site as the project is complete, reducing the construction zone wherever possible.

If you wish to be added to the distribution list for email updates regarding construction activity anticipated each upcoming week, please email Andrew R. Port, Director of Planning & Development, at .

The Inn Street Fountain is designated as a state-listed historic resource by the Massachusetts Historical Commission (MHC).  The Fountain is a focal point for Inn Street and has been out of operation for several years. Excessive water usage and public concerns regarding water quality require modifications to the fountain filtration system and stormwater management in the immediate area.  This project will upgrade the fountain pump and filtration system with a full treatment, self-contained unit that recycles municipal water. Additional features of the fountain restoration will include artistic up-lighting (for nighttime enjoyment of the columns), a spray park feature (fluctuating and interactive “pop-jets” for children) all of which will provide a more lively experience for pedestrians while preserving the historic fountain.

A key feature of this project will be the installation of interpretive historic signage conveying the dramatic story of urban renewal and preservation in Downtown Newburyport (circa 1960-1970). Text and images will illustrate the significance of the fountains references to the central waterfront and Newburyport’s maritime history, as well as its central location within the Urban Renewal boundaries of the 1960s and 1970s, when substantial historic preservation in downtown Newburyport resulted in the revitalization of this City.

This project has been generously supported by the City of Newburyport Community Preservation Fund, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Division of Conservation Services, the Mayor and City Council through use of Downtown Parking revenues, and the Greater Newburyport Mothers and Families Club.

For additional information please contact the Director of Planning & Development, Andrew R. Port, via email at or by calling (978) 465-4400 x 1.

To donate to the Inn Street Improvement Project, please visit