- Associated Press - Monday, April 4, 2016

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - University of Iowa officials have proposed a new location for a building to house its art museum less than a month after pulling out of a public-private partnership for the project.

The Iowa City Press-Citizen (https://icp-c.com/1qkSbqt ) reports that the University of Iowa Museum of Art’s executive director, Sean O’Harrow, announced Saturday that the new location is just a few blocks from the site in the previous proposal.

“The plan is to connect the new museum to the (UI) Main Library southern section,” O’Harrow wrote in a letter to museum supporters Sunday. “We couldn’t be more pleased.”

O’Harrow says the new proposal includes access to additional event spaces and visitor services through the university’s main library, including a cafe and auditorium. The space’s proximity to the library could bring in more foot traffic and allow for stronger partnerships between the College of Education and the library departments.

“Parking located under the museum facility will elevate the building above the flood zone,” O’Harrow said.

Last month, the university pulled out of the initial agreement with local developers to construct a building that would house the university’s 14,000-piece art collection. University officials cited higher than expected costs as the reason.

The art collection has been without a home since 2008, when the museum’s previous building along the Iowa River was damaged in a flood. The museum staff is moving back into the old building after nearly eight years, but university officials say that it can’t obtain proper insurance for the building because of flood concerns.

The new plan will be submitted to the Board of Regents for approval.

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Information from: Iowa City Press-Citizen, https://www.press-citizen.com/


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