Miami Art Museum clears giant hurdle to new home, thanks to $100 million in public funds

Downtown Miami is beginning to come to life. We have a sports arena, the beautiful Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, and a vibrant nightlife… and soon, a beautiful new home for the Miami Art Museum. With $100 million from Miami-Dade County, combined with private pledges totaling over $31 million and counting, MAM will break ground on its grand Herzog & de Meuron-designed building this fall.

Matthew Haggman of the Miami Herald reports:

Miami Art Museum eligible to receive $100 million in public funds

The Miami Art Museum got an important boost by meeting all requirements to receive public funding for its new home.

In another key step toward downtown’s urban revival, the Miami Art Museum is eligible to receive $100 million in county bond proceeds, removing the biggest hurdle to start construction on the facility’s long-sought new home in Miami.
MAM has “met all the conditions” for receipt of the public funds, Miami-Dade County Manager George Burgess wrote Friday. Most of the bond money, approved by voters in a 2004 referendum, has been withheld until museum officials first raised more than $30 million in private pledges to build the museum.
“This is the day we’ve been waiting for, this is a very exciting day for us,” said Aaron Podhurst, MAM’s chairman, who has led the effort over the past decade to win private and public funds to build the new facility.
There are details that must be ironed out, including getting approval from city leaders for $2 million to clear and remediate the 29-acre park that will include the art museum. And county commissioners can weigh in before bonds are sold to fund construction.
Nevertheless, Podhurst said groundbreaking is planned for this fall, with the art museum to be completed by the end of 2012.
Designed by Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron, the $200 million museum is to rise along Biscayne Bay in Miami’s Bicentennial Park — which will be renamed Museum Park and redesigned under the auspices of New York planning firm Cooper Robertson & Partners. The city park is also planned to house the new home for the Miami Science Museum, designed by London’s Grimshaw Architects.
The $275 million science museum is not as far along. Construction is at least a year away, and museum officials have yet to show they’ve generated sufficient private pledges to be eligible for public funding.
The museums and park are viewed as essential components of Miami’s city center renewal, providing another anchor to an area that includes the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, American Airlines Arena and a slew of new residential and commercial projects….
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