Queens Museum unveils long-awaited expansion project
by Andrew Shilling
Nov 05, 2013 | 641 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Mayor Michael Bloomberg cuts the ribbon with museum board members and executives.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg cuts the ribbon with museum board members and executives.
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Council members Juilissa Ferreras and Jimmy Van Bramer.
Council members Juilissa Ferreras and Jimmy Van Bramer.
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Following a nearly eight-year and roughly $68 million development project, the new Queens Museum – formerly the Queens Museum of Art - is now ready to unveil its newly expanded art space to the public on November 9.

Opening weekend events and exhibitions will include work from Andy Warhol, Pedro Reyes and a modern Indian art exhibit.

Last week, a long list of Queens elected officials, board members and museum executives were on hand for a ribbon-cutting ceremony for 50,000 square feet of new galleries, classrooms, public event space, museum shop and café, doubling the size of the existing institution.

“A vibrant cultural community is vibrant to growing the economy,” said Mayor Michael said. “Not just for the economics of it, but really it’s important for the people of New York City who can enjoy the cultural events and cultural experiences.”

Bloomberg added that he is also excited that there will be a new Queens Library in the museum, expected to open sometime in 2015.

“That project is the first of its kind in the nation,” he said.

Queens Museum executive director Tom Finkelpearl said he hopes the expansion will bring some new excitement to the borough.

“While this is a time of tremendous change for the Queens Museum, what will remain constant is our dedication to openness and engagement,” Finkelpearl said. “We designed a dynamic space that reflects our overall philosophy and allows us to broaden our current state of public programs, introduce innovative initiatives and create wonderful opportunities for the new participants and longtime visitors.”

Jack Friedman, executive director of the Queens Chamber of Commerce, said the new expansion is a vital piece of the puzzle in the economic development of the borough.

“Tourism is so important,” Friedman said. “This is a great event space, great museum and really just a sign of what Queens has to offer.”

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