The Harvard Art Museums announced that its much awaited renovation and expansion of the 32 Quincy Street building will finally open to the public in the fall of 2014. Since breaking ground in 2010, the project has presented numerous challenges further delaying the opening of the Harvard Art Museums: The Fogg, the Busch-Reisinger and the Arthur M. Sackler museum.
The expansion project which began in 2008 will bring the renown collections of Harvard’s three art museums under one roof with 100,000 square feet of new gallery space. The expansion and renovation by the internationally known workshop of Renzo Piano will include three new art study centers, the Strauss Center for Conversation and Technical Studies, a lightbox gallery on the top level of the building, a 300-seat theater for presentations, performances and discussions, museum shop and cafe among other spaces.
The project has proven to be a complex one for many reasons, in particular given that 1927 historic facade on 32 Quincy Street had to be preserved and high levels of asbestos in the old building had to be removed and brought up to current code requirements. The expansion and restoration of the historic 1927 building will increase Harvard Art Museums gallery space by more than 40%, adding over 12,000 square feet of new exhibition space.