The archway was ruined by Hurricane Irma.

Monroe County completed the repairs to the partially collapsed historic archway at West Martello to match the original.

The archway is within the walls of the Civil War-era West Martello fort built in 1866 that was never officially completed. The nonprofit Key West Garden Club manages the tropical gardens along the shoreline on Higgs Beach. There is no admission, and it is open to the public. Special events, like weddings, are often held within the walls, with the archway being a center point of many celebrations.

“We already hosted the first wedding right dab smack in front of the archway a couple of weekends ago,” said Kathleen Gillis, a volunteer garden club docent. “It is an iconic part of our garden, and we are so happy to have it again.”

To learn more about the Key West Garden Club at West Martello, visit

Completed repairs of the archway

“Completing the iconic archway repair is an important symbol of resilience after Hurricane Irma,” said Cary Knight, director of Monroe County Project Management. “There is a tremendous amount of history and beauty within those walls.”

For other Monroe County projects, visit

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