The Statue of Liberty is Getting a New, Multimedia Museum
Amid intense discussions on immigration in the 2016 election, the 130-year, "immigrant-driven" history of the Statue of Liberty will be taught through a modern multimedia museum, New York officials announced Thursday.
The 26,000-square-foot museum is set to open in 2019, replacing the smaller one that’s been at Lady Liberty’s pedestal since the 1980s. As a result of the 9/11 attacks, the existing museum is available merely to 20 percent of the monument’s 4.5 million yearly visitors. The new spot, however, will be situated behind the statue and accessible to all visitors.
The design revealed that the facility will offer astounding views of the island and the city skyline through its grassy roof, intended as a habitat for migratory birds, in addition, The Statue of Liberty’s original torch will be displayed in the museum. A theatre exhibit will walk visitors through the interior and history of the statue — which was gifted by France in 1876, —and erected in Liberty Island (formerly known as Bedloe’s Island) 10 years later.
Supported by the National Park Service — the Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation with fundraising efforts headed by fashion designer, Diane Von Furstenberg — aims to reach $100 million to accomplish the $70 million project on time. The additional $30 million is to invest in monument restorations. So far $40 million has been raised with the financial boost of distinguished philanthropists like former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon.
“Lady Liberty is the symbol of everything that America’s about — freedom, hope, possibility and resilience. It is her that millions of immigrants saw first as they arrived in this country”, Von Furstenberg says, and “It is those people and their descendants who make our country rich and unique.”