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County’s Master Plan Would Grow Historymiami Museum At A 50%

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HistoryMiami Museum would grow 50% larger with a plan for a master developer to redesign about 17 acres of county-owned land into a Metrocenter community. The Smithsonian affiliate museum is to be rebuilt into a Central Plaza along with the county main public library.

The museum would grow at least 100,000 square feet from the present 70,000 now spread over two of the three buildings in a design of 1983. A third building had earlier been the predecessor of Perez Art Museum Miami.

The Metrocenter project is in the heart of 28 acres that serves as the seat of the county government. The aim is to build a 24-room community with housing, an inter modal transit terminal, educational buildings, park and open spaces, office, retail space, new cultural facilities and to finish the entire project might take 12 to 15 years.

The museum location is not predetermined yet, but should be close to the main library to create a cultural Arts Campus, the specifications say. A common outdoors space may help integrate the two buildings. The aim is to create a hub “for civic engagement.”

The minimum requirements for the new museum include 12,000 square feet for permanent exhibitions, 8,000 for a temporary gallery, 5,000 for semi-permanently gallery, and 1,000 for the Whitman Gallery. Also sought, class rooms with 50-person capacity, reading rooms, an event space for up to 300 people with a kitchen, a space for collections and archives for exhibition preparation and fabrication, offices, employee support areas for staff of up to 50 people and additional storage. A museum store is suggested.

To integrate it with the downtown intermodal terminal, a key component of the Metrocenter project, the museum is to have access to parking and convenient public transit options and a plan for visitor and school bus drop-off areas.

HistoryMiami Museum was founded in 1962. It’s home to over 37,000 artifacts from prehistoric archeological findings from the 20th Century Afro-Cuban Folk’s Art. Its archives and research center collection are considered one of the most important in Florida. The museum since 2011 has been part of the Smithsonian Institute Affiliation Program, which allows it to bring in Smithsonian’s exhibitions. It’s accredited by the American Alliance of Museums.