Learn more about the master plan that will put KMSKA on the map even more prominently than before.
The imposing museum building in Antwerp’s Zuid or ‘South’ quarter celebrated its 120th anniversary in 2010. In all those years, the building was never thoroughly renovated. The last partial overhaul was carried out in 1999, in preparation of the major Van Dyck exhibition. So it is high time that the 19th-century art temple should be converted into a modern museum building fit for the 21st century.
It quickly became apparent during the partial renovation in 1999 that a more structural
intervention was required in order to maintain the building and infrastructure adequately. In 2003,
the Flemish Government Architect therefore launched a call for public tenders. One year later, the
Rotterdam-based firm of
Claus and Kaan Architects was commissioned to design a master plan. By 2006, it
presented a renovation project in six phases. This plan was subsequently reduced to two phases
because of budgetary constraints. Phase one encompasses demolition work and the construction of a
new depot. During the second phase, the building will be refitted and a new roof will be installed.
In addition, the original route through the museum is to be reinstated and the surface area
expanded. The architects will add additional floors in four large patios that are presently unused.
This way, they intend to create a modern – vertical – museum inside the historical exterior.
The actual construction work will get under way in the autumn of 2011. If all goes according to plan, Antwerp will have its prestigious and innovative new-look KMSKA in 2019.
The Flemish Community is investing EUR 44 million in this thorough renovation of the museum
building, the most comprehensive that KMSKA has undergone in its entire history.