QUEBEC CITY – A major expansion is now underway at the Musée des Beaux-Arts du Québec.
After eight years of planning and investment from three levels of government, work is underway on a new 15,000 square metre wing.
There are still another four months before the grand opening, but there are already some defining features of the Pierre Lassonde Pavillon, Quebec’s largest cultural construction project.
“It’s a way for the Quebec government to show the work of arts that are not shown usually because we didn’t have the space to show them,” said construction director Richard Hebert.
This addition will double the floor space of the current museum, including 12 new exhibition galleries.
The architecture combines modern design with antiquity; an 86-year old church lends a wall to the main foyer.
The project is budgeted at over $103 million, including $45 million from the provincial government and $33 million from the federal government.
“It is the occasion for the museum to get very known on the international scene because we will be able to organize big exhibitions,” said Hebert.
Museum staff hope they’ll see 100,000 more visits every year.
The new wing will open to the public on June 24.
Correction: An earlier version of this story reported the addition of a new 15,000 square foot wing, but the new building is actually 15, 000 square metres, or over 160, 000 square feet.