Fayetteville undecided on museum location

November 17, 2008 7:34:15 PM PST
It was supposed to be part of a cultural icon in Fayetteville, but the proposed new art museum for Festival Park has instead become controversial. Monday, residents had a chance to sound-off about where they think the new museum should go.

Most at the public hearing agreed the first idea was the best --keep the art museum at Festival Park. However they say instead of taking over the grassy area of park, which was built after the museum design, build it more along Rowan Street once a new bridge is constructed. The idea would leave more space along the road for the building and extra parking.

No one doubts Festival Park's success, outdoor event like the Dogwood Festival and other concerts packed the park.

So much that some worried putting the $15 million art museum here would could ruin everything.

The city even gave some land in the park for the new museum, but then questioned whether there may be a better location.

That's what these task force members have to recommend. They picked out 11 alternate sites in and around downtown Fayetteville. Monday night's public hearing was to get public input on those ideas.

Out of the close to two dozen people signed up to talk, all but two supported keeping the museum at Festival Park.

Many agreed with a compromise alternative that would keep the museum at the park, but modify the building's design.

City council Ted Mohen asked for the task force inquiry.

The task force is supposed to have its recommendation ready for city council Dec. 15, but they are not sure they'll make that deadline.

Even if they agree on new plans, it may not get built anytime soon. That would include a $5 to 6 million state grant. So far no money has been raised.


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