Construction on the exterior of the new Royal Alberta Museum is complete, bringing the facility one step closer to opening. Although primary building construction is now complete, work will continue on the interior of the building, which will be followed by the large task of moving into the facility. The museum is slated to open in late 2017.
Work began on the Edmonton museum in 2013 and involved the employment of several thousand construction workers. The $375.6-million project was split by the provincial and federal governments, with Alberta contributing $253 million and the Government of Canada investing $122.5 million. The museum, which will be the largest in Western Canada and an important aspect of Edmonton’s Arts District, was designed by DIALOG’s team of architects, engineers, interior designers and landscape architects.
The 399,340 square-foot museum was designed and constructed with a combination of reliable materials and state-of-the-art technology and elements of history. The museum’s exterior walls are covered in limestone, which is also used in interior public spaces alongside granite flooring; advanced controls in the facility allow varying settings, so each exhibit’s environmental needs can be met; and mosaic panels crafted by Ernestine Tahedl that were reclaimed from the Canada Post building that previously occupied the property are featured on the museum’s pedestrian boulevard on 103A Avenue.
“Cultural institutions like the Royal Alberta Museum in Edmonton play a key role in developing dynamic communities that celebrate Canada’s diverse heritage and creativity. Museums bring people together, sparking curiosity, encouraging tourism and connecting community members,” said Amarjeet Sohi, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, in a press release. “The Government of Canada recognizes that strategic investments in public infrastructure – including funding for cultural projects like this one – will build the Canada of the 21st century and promote economic development that will help the middle class grow and prosper.”