Elfland in Somerville, Massachusetts

More Boston landmarks, and a dinosaur farm

Located northwest of Boston, Somerville, Massachusetts, has experienced a lot of change in recent years. A vibrant arts and music scene, proximity to many universities, and the presence of MBTA rail stops have made it a desirable suburb. This has led to many older buildings near desirable locations, such as Davis Square and Union Square, being knocked down to make way for condos.

An abandoned gas station at the intersection of Summer and School streets, near Union Square, there was an abandoned gas station. The lot was cleared and fenced off, but when new construction went in, the vacuum was filled, by Elfland, the idea of a local, anonymous eight-year-old.

The boy and his family started adding elf- and Boston-themed models, which grew into a tiny elf town. Other people started contributing, and now Elfland is a beloved local landmark. Developers have their eyes on the Elfland location, of course, threatening Elfland’s existence. And so the Somerville planning board met to discuss the issue late in 2021. Concerns were expressed about the fate of Elfland, as well as ideas about keeping it or relocating it. The potential developers “are hoping to honor ‘Elfland’ as a community art installation in some way.”

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