Whitney Museum to Proceed with High Line Museum
Source:Artforum Date: 2009-10-13 Size:
Three years after reaching a tentative agreement with the city, the Whitney Museum of American Art is forging ahead with plans to build a second museum at the entrance to the High Line, the abandoned elevated railway line that has recently been transformed into a public park.

 

Three years after reaching a tentative agreement with the city, the Whitney Museum of American Art is forging ahead with plans to build a second museum at the entrance to the High Line, the abandoned elevated railway line that has recently been transformed into a public park.

The museum signed a contract last month with the New York City Economic Development Corporation to buy the city-owned site at Washington and Gansevoort Streets, in the meatpacking district, for eighteen million dollars. That is about half the appraised value of the property, a sign of the city’s interest in drawing visitors to the area.

According to the final agreement, the Whitney has up to four years to close on the purchase of the land and five years to begin construction of the building, designed by Renzo Piano. The museum will make nonrefundable monthly payments of fifty thousand dollars to the city until the closing date, which has not been determined. These payments will be credited toward the purchase price. (The balance is due at the closing.)

The signed contract comes three years after the Dia Art Foundation scrapped its plans to open a museum next to the High Line entrance. That’s when the Whitney stepped in and reached a conditional agreement to take over the space.

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