Cushing Memorial Park is located on Dudley Road in Framingham. This property was originally approximately 100 acre military hospital site. Early in World War II it was purchased by the US War Department, and a military hospital was built on the site consisting of over 100 buildings, including seven operating room suites. It was named after Dr. Harvey Cushing, a pioneer in the field of neurosurgery. It specialized in the treatment of wounds to the neurological system – brain, spine and peripheral nervous system. By the end of the war almost 14,000 servicemen and women had been treated there. Following the war, it was acquired by the state of Massachusetts, and for many years was a center of geriatric care and research.
The 67.5 acre property is dedicated to passive recreational pursuits and it has become central to the Framingham Park and Open Space system over a 20 year period. The grounds are unique as the property continues to evolve from its historical roots as an expansive state hospital with massive infrastructure (that included roadways, parking lots, utility systems and more than 100 buildings) into a major public park and open space asset.
Today, defining park features include the grand pedestrian promenades (renovated former hospital roads), expansive open lawns and meadows, (former hospital building footprints), mature shade trees, gazebos, beautiful flower gardens, 911 Memorial, picnic tables, benches, birdhouses, keyhole garden, and more. It also houses Cushing Memorial Chapel, the Academy Building and the Cushing Building. Hundreds of residents enjoy the park on a daily basis. Leashed dogs are welcome.