Work begins on $383m extension to American Museum of Natural History

Ground has been broken on a $383m, 21,400 sq m extension to the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) in New York.

The Richard Gilder Centre for Science, Education, and Innovation was designed by Studio Gang, Ralph Appelbaum Associates and Reed Hilderbrand, and will contain:

  • A Central Exhibition Hall, which will act as the museum gateway and lead visitors to galleries and the campus
  • The Susan and Peter Solomon Family Insectarium, which will comprise more than half of all known insects
  • The Collections Core, housing 4 million specimens and containing observation points where visitors can look into working collections areas
  • The Invisible Worlds Theatre, designed by the Berlin’s Tamschick Media+Space and Seville’s BMA Boris Micka Associates, and displaying visualisations of 21st-century science
  • A Butterfly Vivarium
  • A redesigned Research Library and Learning Centre
  • Education spaces for middle and high school pupils, families and teachers.

The centre will also link 10 museum buildings together.

Ellen Futter, AMNH president, said: "This spring, the museum kicked off its 150th anniversary commemoration, celebrating our mission in science and education, highlighting our commitment to New York City and underscoring the museum’s lynchpin role in bridging science and society."

Jeanne Gang, Studio Gang founding principal, said: "Our design for the Gilder Centre will invite visitors to explore the wonders of the museum with its openness and smooth, flowing geometry.

"Through a network of new connections, people will be able to follow their own curiosity to discover treasures of natural history."

Images courtesy of AMNH

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