Work continues on the museum’s comprehensive renovation and expansion project, a component of PEM’s landmark $650 million Advancement Campaign to support endowment, innovation and sustainability. PEM’s expansion program features a 40,000-square-foot new wing of galleries designed by Ennead Architects and an 80,000-square-foot Collection Center for artwork storage, care and conservation designed by Schwartz/Silver Architects.
Groundbreaking for the new 40,000-square-foot wing will take place in 2016 and the new wing will open to the public in 2019. Rising three stories and adding a handsome facade to the Essex Street pedestrian way, PEM’s new wing will be designed to clarify, unify and enhance the older sections of the museum while providing new galleries dedicated to presentation of portions of the Museum’s extensive collection. The building site occupies the northwest corner of the museum complex where the Asian Garden currently resides. No existing galleries will be demolished in the building process and when the project is complete, gallery space will be increased by 15% to bring total gallery space to 100,000 square feet, ranking PEM among the top 20 art museums in the country.
PEM’s new 80,000 square-foot Collection Center will provide unprecedented capacity for the study and care of the museum’s collection of more than 1.8 million objects. Research and access to the collection is a key priority for the museum and this facility will allow the museum to enhance stewardship of its rich and storied holdings. The Collection Center will be designed by the Boston-based firm, Schwartz/Silver Architects, and is slated for completion by 2019.
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SALEM – Buckle up, folks. This isn’t a typical groundbreaking. Peabody Essex Museum officials broke ground on several projects – both literally and figuratively – in downtown Salem late Friday morning. All together, they cost about $170 million. But one project is effectively being kept in secret going forward, and others involve no construction at all.