Fort Worth

Amon Carter Museum Renovations Taking Shape

Renovations to front entrance should conclude by September

In recent years Fort Worth's Cultural District has seen quite the upgrades in facilities.

For the past five months, the Amon Carter Museum of American Art has been under construction, but visitors are just now seeing a glimpse of the final product.

Those who have driven by have undoubtedly seen the construction fences and signs alerting them the museum is still open. This week, large glass panes have been the center of attention as they're installed as part of the museum's new front entrance.

"We're going back to the original Philip Johnson design where he had just two panels, very large panels of glass," said museum facilities manager Alfred Walker.

Johnson was the building's original architect. The new glass panels each weigh 1,200 pounds and are 8-feet by 12-feet. Installing the panels required construction crews to bring in specialized equipment from Houston to lift the glass and put them in place.

Walker said this long-planned project serves multiple purposes. It gets rid of the cumbersome revolving door, improving the ability to control temperature, and means no more shades.

"Because of the sun facing us, we'd have to lower the screens and you didn't have a good opportunity to see the skyline," he said.

After all, that's what Amon Carter wanted for his museum when he picked the spot and laid out the plans in his will. He wanted there to be a great view while viewing his American art collection and visiting exhibitions like "Indigenous Beauty," which debuted just this week.

"We're just so excited about this," Walker said. "We can't wait to remove these fences and just bring the public in."

The museum's website says there have been four major renovations in the museum's history since opening in 1961. This renovation is not as big of a project, but Walker said it's just phase one.

"We're looking at some things. I'm not going to give you all the information, but, hey, stay tuned," he said.

Construction should be completed in the next six to eight weeks. Parking has been an issue for visitors, but Walker thanked patrons for their patience.

The museum has remained open with the south entrance being the only way in or out on Lancaster Avenue.

The museum has not publicly said how much is being spent on the renovations.

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