Last-ditch effort: Opponents to Boston Children's expansion file injunction to stop garden demolition

In a last-ditch effort, opponents to a $1 billion expansion at Boston Children’s Hospital have filed a court injunction to stop demolition of a beloved garden.

The planned 11-story new clinical building is set to be built on top of what is now the Prouty Garden, a restorative outdoor space that former patients, their families and others in the community have fought hard to save.

Hospital officials said the garden soon would be permanently closed to prepare for construction, yet opponents have filed an injunction in Suffolk Superior Court to halt any prep work. The state had approved the construction project in late October.

Though the opponents filed an appeal against the project with the state’s Health Facilities Appeals Board, the state said the board lacks enough members to meet formally, so all appeals must be made through the courts.

The complaint, filed today, asks the court to appoint members to the Health Facilities Appeals Board to hear the appeal, or asks the court to rule on an appeal itself.

A hearing on the injunction is scheduled to be held on Wednesday, Nov. 23, at 11 a.m.

"We asked hospital representatives if they would hold off on closing Prouty Garden and maintain the status quo, but they refused, so we need to ask the court to step in and freeze the status quo until a fair and impartial hearing on the dispute can be held in court,” said Greg McGregor, an attorney for the opponent group, in a release.

A spokesman for the hospital was not immediately available for comment.

Jessica Bartlett covers health care, including hospitals, health IT, health policy and insurance, as well as the beer industry.