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Seattle Asian Art Museum seeks approval for $54 million renovation

Seattle Asian Art Museum. Seattle City Council. Renovation. Seattle Art Museum.

Seattle City Council is to hold a vote on Monday to decide whether or not to approve a $54 million renovation of the Seattle Asian Art Museum.

Part of the Seattle Art Museum, the Seattle Asian Art Museum occupies a 1933 Art Deco building designed by Carl F. Gould and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The renovation of the museum includes the restoration of its historic façade and art deco features as well as a small expansion adding a new gallery and community space.

The project also includes replacing the museum’s current 1930s heating system, adding a cooling system with humidity controls to protect the artwork, seismic upgrades to protect the building from earthquakes, the installation of a new art freight elevator and improvements to the loading dock.

The budget for the works is $54 million, with the museum self-funding $33 million, $21 million coming from the council and $6 million in tax credits.

Seattle City Council will be voting on a zoning-change as the building is located in an area zoned for single-family housing. However, the museum pre-dates the zoning and was grandfathered in and therefore needs an exemption to renovate and expand.

If the council approves the expansion construction is expected to begin in February. The museum will be closed throughout the work and it hopes to reopen in 2019.

Image: Seattle Asian Art Museum.

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Sam McCaffrey

Journalist. Likes immersive entertainment experiences, museums, zoos and the odd go on a Waltzer.

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