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View from Prince Street of the New Museum’s OMA-designed expansion. Photo: OMA/
View from Prince Street of the New Museum’s OMA-designed expansion. Photo: OMA/

New Museum Receives $20 Million Gift, Reveals Details of New OMA-Designed Building

The New Museum in New York has announced details of its $63 million expansion—the construction of a second building designed by OMA architects Rem Koolhaas and Shohei Shigematsu, in collaboration with Cooper Robertson. On the site of its adjacent property at 231 Bowery, which the institution acquired in 2008 and has used as a space for additional programming, the museum will build a seven-story, sixty-thousand-square-foot facility that will be named in honor of trustee Toby Devan Lewis, who pledged $20 million in support of the project—the largest gift ever received by the institution.

“We are thrilled to work with OMA to address our current and future needs, and selected them for their exceptional response to our brief, their civic passion, and future thinking,” said museum director Lisa Phillips. “The OMA design will provide seamless connectivity and horizontal flow between the two buildings, expanded space for our world renowned exhibitions, and access to some of our most innovative programs that the public currently cannot see.”

With three floors of galleries, the building will double the museum’s current exhibition space. It will also feature additional space for community and education programs; a permanent home for its cultural incubator NEW INC; a new restaurant, bookstore, public plaza, and artist-in-residence studio; and an expanded lobby. The venue will connect to the museum’s main building on the second, third, and fourth floors, and the design will include increased public amenities and improved vertical circulation. Its facade of laminated glass and metal mesh will aim to complement the exterior of the New Museum’s current home, designed by the Japanese architectural firm SANAA in 2003.

“The building gives us the opportunity to continue to experiment with new formats and models around various areas of programmatic focus,” artistic director Massimiliano Gioni said in a statement. “These areas include new productions and ambitious new commissions; contextual exhibition presentations; studio space for artist residencies; and international partnerships and collaborations with peer institutions around the world.”

To date, the museum has raised $79 million toward its capital campaign goal of $89 million—$63 million of which will go toward construction costs. Ground breaking for the new building is scheduled for 2020; a projected opening date is set for 2022. The museum plans to remain open and operational during most of the construction period.