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Updated 9:00 AM June 21, 2006




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Regents approve final UMMA project

The Museum of Art (UMMA) has reached its $35.4 million project fundraising goal and met the terms of the prestigious $1.5 million Kresge Foundation challenge grant awarded last year. With funding and final construction drawings in place, the Board of Regents June 16 approved the project going to bid. The process is expected to begin immediately so that construction can commence in late summer.

View of UMMA east court and commons. (Rendering copyright 2004 Allied Works Architecture)

The UMMA capital campaign—part of the University-wide $2.5 billion The Michigan Difference campaign—will continue, museum leaders say, with a focus on increasing the endowment and securing additional support for building-related and operational costs.

“Every one of the museum's friends should relish this moment and look forward to what it will make possible for the University and for our broader community,” says UMMA Director James Steward. “Without the commitment of so many individuals, corporations, and foundations—in particular The Kresge Foundation—and of the University of Michigan, we simply could not have made it to this goal. U-M has long deserved a great art museum facility to go along with the ever-increasing stature of its art collections and programs.”

The UMMA expansion and restoration project—designed by principal architect Brad Cloepfil and his firm Allied Works Architecture of Portland, Ore.—includes a 53,000 square-foot addition to be named The Maxine and Stuart Frankel and The Frankel Family Wing, in honor of the Bloomfield Hills couple who made a $10 million gift to the project. The Frankel Wing will include new galleries for collections and temporary exhibitions; additional art storage facilities; educational spaces including an auditorium, classrooms, and object study classrooms; an expanded art conservation lab; improved visitor amenities; and substantial restoration of its current facility. In 2004, the UMMA project won one of four coveted design awards from the New York chapter of the American Institute of Architects.

The Kresge Foundation awards highly competitive grants on a challenge basis to assist in completing ambitious capital campaigns for building projects, and pays them only after all other needed campaign funds have been pledged. One important goal of the Kresge grant is to help institutions broaden their traditional base of support by encouraging wider community involvement. The independent, private foundation was created by the personal gifts of Sebastian S. Kresge. It is not affiliated with any corporation or organization.

The museum’s long-time home closed to the public June 25 to prepare for construction. Through fall 2008 it will operate a temporary exhibition space to be called UMMA Off/Site, located immediately adjacent to Central Campus at 1301 South University (corner of South Forest).

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