Design for new Statue of Liberty Museum unveiled
A new museum that seemingly rises out of the ground will replace the small exhibition space inside the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty, its grass roof blending with the landscape and affording sweeping views of the iconic symbol of hope and freedom and New York Harbor.
Officials on Thursday unveiled the design for a new Statue of Liberty Museum at a groundbreaking ceremony on Liberty Island, which sees 4.3 million visitors each year.
Slated to open in 2019, the 26,000-square-foot building, constructed of glass, granite and concrete, will be sited across the circular plaza from the statue.
Architect Nicholas Garrison said the goal was to design a building that didn’t compete with the statue and wasn’t the first thing visitors saw as they disembarked the ferry.
“We wanted to make sure our building didn’t impede the experience,” Garrison said.
Designer Diane von Furstenberg is leading the fundraising for the $70 million project, $40 million of which has been raised, said
Stephen Briganti, president and CEO of the Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation.
The angular-shaped museum, inspired by the water’s edge, has a monumental staircase that rises to the rooftop, featuring a paved terrace and grassy surface meant as a habitat for migratory birds.
The green roof plays off the idea that it’s an extension of the park, said Garrison, a partner at FXFOWLE
and the project’s designer.
“It’s as if the museum had been lifted out of the ground and the ground goes with it,” he said.
The museum entrance is halfway up the steps, where it opens up into a wide patio.
“It’s also a natural grandstand for an event that could happen in the plaza,” Garrison said, adding that the roof and steps could also be a stage for a performance.