The Philadelphia Museum of Art (PMA) project involved an ambitious mix of renovation and new construction to take the country’s largest art museum into the future.
The first phase was the expansion and renovation of the Fidelity Mutual Life Insurance Company Building, built in 1927. Now the Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building, it was an architectural marvel and a prime example of Art Deco architecture. It showcases cutting-edge collections of art while offering a variety of other welcoming spaces to the public, including a library, café and bookstore.
The second phase of the project was the restoration and renovation of the stone facades and roof elements on the museum main building. The gentle cleaning, repair, and repointing will prevent water infiltration. The building’s Minnesota dolomitic limestone and colorful glazed terracotta ornament was restored to excellent condition.
The third phase was the construction of a 442 car underground parking garage that includes a new landscaped sculpture garden on top of the garage. Designed to include new trees, shrubs, and thousands of perennial plants, the garden also features open seating and views of the Schuylkill River. The parking garage and sculpture garden were built upon the existing Fairmount Avenue surface parking lot that now accommodates 84 vehicles and extends from the Italian Fountain to Kelly Drive parallel to the Azalea Garden. Additionally, a new 27-car parking area for public use was built between Waterworks Drive and the Schuylkill River. This lot is available to the public 24 hours a day and contains environmental features such as pervious paving, perforated curbing, and an adjacent rain garden to manage stormwater runoff.
The most recent phase replaced a loading dock with a new entrance, and restored and renovated gallery space.
LF Driscoll is presently performing renovations to increase accessibility and enable future expansions. Current plans include the construction of a new 80,000sf gallery built entirely underground beneath the “Rocky Steps.”One of LF Driscoll’s earliest projects was the construction of the Fountain at Eakins Oval and the re-location of Rudolf Siemering’s Washington Monument sculpture, which establishes the beginning of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway in front of the museum’s grand entrance.
The space was designed to create an engaging experience that fosters chance encounters and visible and approachable leadership. By reducing the real estate footprint and providing tools such as Polycom video and telepresence, significantly reducing its carbon emissions while at the same time improved work/life balance for its employees with reduced travel.
Philadelphia Museum of Art
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