Tuesday June 15, 2010
Tags for: Cleveland Museum of Art's Board of Trustees Approves Completion of Building and Renovation Project
  • Press Release

Cleveland Museum of Art's Board of Trustees Approves Completion of Building and Renovation Project

exterior of the CMA building

A vote Monday afternoon by the Cleveland Museum of Art's Board of Trustees confirms the museum will take the final step in its building and expansion project with planned completion in 2013.

CLEVELAND (June 15, 2010) — A vote Monday afternoon by the Cleveland Museum of Art's Board of Trustees confirms the museum will take the final step in its building and expansion project with planned completion in 2013. In a unanimous vote, the board approved completion of the final phase of the project at its regularly scheduled June meeting.

Throughout the past 18 months, the leadership of the museum has taken a strategic, phased approach to the management of the renovation and expansion in order to ensure that the museum appropriately paced the project with its fundraising and financing. In December 2009, the board approved the construction of the museum's west wing structure; atrium roof and enclosures; and administrative offices, as well as mechanicals, electrical and plumbing throughout the building. With this final vote yesterday, the board approved the last step of the final phase of the project, namely interior finishes of the north and west wings currently under construction, including flooring, painting and interior glass; landscaping in the atrium and throughout the museum's campus; and the build-out of the new Lifelong Learning Center, museum store and dining facilities.

"This is an exciting day for the Cleveland Museum of Art and for Cleveland," said Deborah Gribbon, interim director of the museum. "With this vote of approval, the board has demonstrated its full commitment to the completion of this transformational project, designed to enhance the museum's position as a community center and cultural resource for the region and beyond."

In the summer of 2008, the museum re-opened its original 1916 Beaux-Arts building, designed by Hubbell and Benes, with newly renovated galleries featuring more than 900 works from the collection. Last summer, the museum celebrated the opening of its new east wing, a 139,200-square-foot addition, including a special exhibition hall and galleries for more than 500 modern and contemporary works of art from the museum's collection. At the end of this month, the museum will open 17 new galleries, featuring more than 900 works from its collections of art from the ancient Near East, Greece, Rome and Egypt; Africa; Byzantine and medieval art; and dedicated space for prints and drawings.

To date, the museum has raised more than $220.4 million toward the $350 million project. Earlier this month, the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority agreed to provide up to $75 million in bond financing.

CMA's Renovation and Expansion
The museum's new facility will include two fully renovated architectural landmarks, the 1916 Beaux-Arts building and Marcel Breuer's 1971 addition with its distinctive façade of alternating light and dark grey granite stripes, as well as Rafael Viñoly's two new striped marble and granite wings on the east and west sides of the complex. Each ending in a dramatic glass-box gallery, the wings will offer panoramic views of the museum's park setting, as well as views into the museum galleries and conservation studios. A third new 39,000-square-foot structure will form the north side of a large courtyard with a glass canopy crowning an atrium at the center of the complex. Components of the project include:

  • The renovation of two architecturally significant buildings — the museum's original building, designed by Hubbell and Benes and opened to the public in 1916, and the 1971 Center for Arts and Education designed by Marcel Breuer;
  • The addition of 200,000 square feet to the facility, including three new wings;
  • The creation of a 39,000-square-foot glass-enclosed atrium that will unite the entire complex and serve as the visual and spatial heart of the museum;
  • The creation of a new Lifelong Learning Center that brings the museum's collection to life in innovative ways through interactive, hands-on activities for museum visitors of all ages;
  • Improved visitor amenities, including parking with covered access to the museum, a spacious new café and restaurant and an expanded museum store;
  • Enhanced facilities for storage and study of the collection;
  • New state-of-the-art conservation studios;
  • New offices and workrooms; and
  • Additional space to house the Ingalls Library and a new, light-filled reading room and reference area.

The founding vision of the Cleveland Museum of Art was to create a beautiful setting for what would become one of this country's great encyclopedic art collections, as well as to make this experience accessible to everyone, free of charge. The capital project currently underway will transform the museum's physical layout and infrastructure and significantly improve both the visitor experience and the storage and presentation of the collection.

About the Cleveland Museum of Art
The Cleveland Museum of Art is renowned for the quality and breadth of its collection, which includes more than 40,000 objects and spans 6,000 years of achievement in the arts. It is a significant international forum for exhibitions, scholarship, performing arts and art education. Admission to the museum has been free since its founding.

The Cleveland Museum of Art has a membership of nearly 25,000 households and is supported by a broad range of individuals, foundations and businesses in Cleveland and Northeast Ohio. The museum is generously funded by Cuyahoga County residents through Cuyahoga Arts and Culture. Additional support comes from the Ohio Arts Council, which helped fund this project with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans. For more information about the museum, its holdings, programs and events, call 888-CMA-0033 or visit www.ClevelandArt.org.

Contact the Museum's Media Relations Team:
(216) 707-2261