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$6.5m expansion for Kentucky Derby Museum

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Kentucky Derby Museum expansion

The new project at the Kentucky Derby Museum will create 16,000 square feet of renovated and new space.

The renovation and expansion is the largest alternation of the museum since its construction in 1985.

The project puts its emphasis on new exhibit space.  The recently acquired D. Wayne Lukas collection is set to have its own permanent gallery.  The move will also allow space to better display key pieces of the Bill Shoemaker collection. This has previously been housed in the museum’s archives.

A new stable will be built at ground level.  This will house resident miniature horse Winston alongside Populist Politics, the current resident thoroughbred.  This area will also include seating for educational programming.  A key feature is that it will offer over 7,400 square feet of covered space.  This can be utilised for a variety of events, such as outdoor weddings, dinners, and parties.  It will enable the museum to host events for up to 1,300.

An expanded second floor will feature additional exhibition space alongside further meeting and rental space.

A totally new third floor will be constructed.  This will house administrative offices, a large conference room and areas for storage.

The Museum ended fiscal year 2017 with record-setting attendance numbers. More than 230,000 visitors came through its doors, representing an increase of over five and a half percent over the previous fiscal year.

This prompted the museum’s board of directors and leadership team to pursue expansion and enhance overall visitor experience.

“We wanted to build upon the momentum of our recent growth and take the museum to the next level,” says Patrick Armstrong, Kentucky Derby Museum President and CEO.  “With this expansion, we’ll create a new, dynamic way to present our mission to engage, educate and excite everyone about the extraordinary event that is the Kentucky Derby to guests from around the world.”

“The Kentucky Derby Museum is one of the city’s iconic attractions drawing both leisure and convention travellers looking for an authentic Louisville experience,” says Karen Williams, President & CEO of the Louisville Convention & Visitors Bureau. “The expansion and renovation will offer our visitors even more one-of-a-kind opportunities to enjoy the thrills and traditions of the legendary Kentucky Derby.”

Construction will start after the 2018 Kentucky Derby.  It is expected to be completed by November, in time for the 2018 Breeders’ Cup at Churchill Downs Racetrack.

Image courtesy of Kentucky Derby Museum.

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