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Our Expansion and Renovation Update Blog

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Feb. 28, 2014

It's Thank You Friday

Things get interesting as you move to the end of the project. With deadlines overlapping between crews and trades, you see things such as new signs being installed before the walls are finished. But you also get to see positive progress. In watching carpet being laid in a new gallery it was easy to forget that the space looked like this just two weeks ago.

Things were cold and fairly quiet outside on Friday, with a crew constructing a new garden wall having to work around tree limbs. Exterior work is nearly complete, though there's plenty of replanting and landscaping on tap for when Spring finally arrives. The action and attention is clearly inside, as every gallery that's completed becomes one more area where art can be reinstalled. Deadlines are tight, and it seems as soon as work is completed somewhere, there are drywall finishers are right behind.

We've traditionally taken time on Fridays to thank everyone involved for their hard work and wish them a happy, relaxing weekend. With opening 71 days away, there will be plenty of people working overtime this Saturday and Sunday, and we want those folks to know we really, really appreciate that.

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Feb. 27, 2014

Progress in Mary's Garden

In the picture shown above, note the unfinished style of concrete in the squares inside the smoth outlines. It's a new kind of concrete that lets water run through, which makes it perfect for this spot. Half of Mary's Garden covers the root system of a big, beautiful live oak tree.

Inside, for the first time in nearly a year, this oval gallery is not an oval office. Galleries are turned over to art installers as construction wraps up, and one of the signs that we're nearing construction completion is when construction workers have to move their field offices. The new carpet is protected by plastic wrap; the workers in the picture are finishing work on a marble threshold.

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Feb. 18, 2014

The Do-List is Still Long, but it's Getting Shorter

Shown above is the installation of new heating and cooling units down a long hallway in the office side of the Museum. It's quite a scene when people have to put on a hard hat before leaving their office to get a cup of coffee.

Inside and out, the deadline pressure is palpable but the progress is readily apparent. The exterior limestone trim is nearly complete, work on the pipefitting for massive new air handler systems seems to be wrapping up, and in gallery after gallery, when the new lighting circuits are complete, the ceiling finishers move in. It's especially gratifying to see one great big domed ceiling, long held up by various little issues, is now almost ready to paint.

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Feb. 14, 2014

The Perfect Hard Hat for Valentine's Day

Shown above, the scene in Huber Court underscores the tens of thousands of little details involved in this project. By the time the doors open on May 10, we'll have dealt with a couple thousand light fixtures and bulbs. Shown below, sometimes the measure of progress depends on the side of the room in which you're standing.

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Click to enlarge

Feb. 13, 2014

Slowly Filling in Pieces of the Puzzle

It's been an interesting week. Inside, seems that as soon as a ceiling is all wired up, workers follow to finish it out. There's a hunger for completely finished galleries so art reinstallation can proceed apace.

Outside, despite mud and crummy weather, we've seen heavy limestone trim installed on new porches, some of which must be carefully cut to accommodate steps and lights. We've seen the start of the new Memorial Garden water feature and we've watched the magic of rough concrete being turned into a smooth curb. There are a lot of construction skills that can be taken for granted, and they are not taken for granted here.

Feb. 10, 2014

Today's Over-Simplified Update Takes Just a Single Sentence

As we move closer to our May 10 reopening, we're seeing less of this and more of this.

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Feb. 5, 2014

It's Hard to Get Around, but That's Not Necessarily a Bad Thing

Shown above, two images from Wednesday work in Huber Court—one of the few places easily accessible in this construction zone. Thanks to new floors being installed or floors being refinished, lots of normal walkways are currently blocked. Still, you can find electricians completing the last step before the drywall hangers arrive, and you can find lots of vitrine bases safe in a staging area waiting for their art.

Outside, one crew of masons worked under a porch roof to avoid the rain and mud. Shown below, another crew couldn't wait for the rain to clear, so they rigged up some keep-dry engineering and kept at it. They had to. There are 94 days to go.

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Click to enlarge

Feb. 3, 2014

Entering a Pivotal Month, We Start With a Thumbs-Up

Shown above, even pervasive dust can't suppress the spirit of getting this project done on time. From nearly finished rooms to areas with a long way to go, people are hustling and working hard. Well, at least inside. Outside it's a muddy mess. Sitework will resume once we dry out from 10 inches of melted snow.

Earlier entries

January 2014

December 2013

November 2013

October 2013

September 2013

August 2013

July 2013

June 2013

May 2013

April 2013

March 2013

February 2013

January 2013

October/December 2012

August/September 2012

June/July 2012