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Arts / Culture

The Tampa Museum of Art will undergo a major expansion to celebrate its centennial

Renderings of the Tampa Museum of Art expansion
Courtesy: Tampa Museum of Art
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The exhibition and collection space will go from 14,800 to more than 43,000 square feet, giving the museum an opportunity to display all the artwork from its permanent collection for the first time.

The expansion will triple the education spaces and allow the museum to display all the artwork from its permanent collection for the first time. It is expected to be completed by 2024.

The Tampa Museum of Art is planning on adding a significant amount of square footage and four-story structure to its downtown waterfront.

Museum officials announced Monday they will start their Centennial Renovation and Expansion.

The new project will add approximately 51,000 square feet of new space to the 25,000 square foot renovation that the building is currently undergoing.

The New York-based Weiss/Manfredi Architecture/Landscape/Urbanism firm is designing the expansion and current renovation of the existing museum building.

Renderings of the Tampa Museum of Art expansion
Courtesy: Tampa Museum of Art

Marion Weiss said the doubling of the exhibition spaces and tripling of education spaces will create an inviting community destination.

“We can't think of a site for a museum anywhere in the world like this. How often are you in the heart of the city, but also on the cultural ribbon that is your Riverwalk?” Weiss said. “We hope that you will be able to see this kind of luminous marker on the horizon at night and wonder, ‘What is there? I need to be there.’ "

Michael Tomor, museum executive director, said the education space will expand from 1,400 to more than 12,000 square feet by adding new areas such as an auditorium and education wing.

“Our hope is to offer educational classroom experiences from the preschool age all the way to the most senior of our communities,” Tomor said.

Renderings of the Tampa Museum of Art expansion
Courtesy: Tampa Museum of Art

The museum plans to quadruple the number of students it serves per year from 6,000 to 24,000.

Tomor added the exhibition and collection space will go from 14,800 to more than 43,000 square feet, giving the museum an opportunity to display all the artwork from its permanent collection for the first time.

“The museum at the moment has over 8,600 works of art in its permanent collection," Tomor said. “And we have never in our history, our 100-year history, had an opportunity to bring our permanent collection out on a long-term view.”

The exhibition space will include five additional galleries, a renovated sculpture gallery, a flexible multimedia gallery space, and an art exhibition program within the special events ballroom.

Renderings of the Tampa Museum of Art expansion
Courtesy: Tampa Museum of Art

Tomor said works from women and artists of color will also be included in the exhibition space.

“As part of our ongoing commitment to representing cultural, racial, ethnic and gender diversity through the artists piloted in its programs, the museum will dedicate at least 10,000 square feet to feature artwork exhibitions by Black and African American, Latin American and women artists,” Tomor said.

The museum will include almost 12,000 square feet of space dedicated to a new covered entrance, lobby, store, and café and triple the event space from 7,200 to 25,600 square feet.

Tomor said the projected completion of the major expansion is set for 2024 and the museum won’t stop growing with the city of Tampa.

Renderings of the Tampa Museum of Art expansion
Courtesy: Tampa Museum of Art

“It will continue the museum's goal to increase our exhibition space and education facilities to accommodate growing community partnerships,” Tomor said, “while also allowing the museum to improve its future income sustainability and enhance the visitor experience and public access.”

The expansion’s cost is $80 million and is being privately funded by the Museum’s Board of Trustees, the Foundation Board of Directors and other community supporters, museum patrons and members.

Tomor added the museum is also looking to raise $100 million to continue expanding the museum’s facilities and more.

“The overall campaign goal includes $68 million for the building expansion,” Tomor said. “And $12 million towards the renovation that's taking place right now, and $20 million to grow the endowments.”

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