As part of MIT’s Kendall Square Initiative, the MIT Museum is preparing to take up residence in the eye of Kendall Square’s innovation district, where it will occupy more than 57,000 square feet of galleries, classrooms, and state-of-the-art program and performance spaces—all at the threshold of MIT’s campus. The projected opening date for the new Museum is sometime in the second half of 2021.
Visitors from local and regional communities, as well as domestic and international travelers, will encounter a destination for curiosity and fun, and a venue for exploration through the Museum’s extensive and unique collections of MIT’s past achievements. The Museum will also present the current work of MIT students and faculty, and showcase critical thinkers and problem solvers outside the MIT community, whose work is impacting the world in which we live.
The Museum will serve as a convener for conversations and interactions between Cambridge residents, the MIT community, and the companies that have made Kendall Square their home.
“We are determined that MIT shall have the kind of museum it really deserves—a place of high quality, that offers a vivid introduction to the work of the Institute past and present, that provides the widest access to our unique historical collections, and that inspires generations of future scientists, engineers, and innovators. Opportunities like this don’t come along every day. We’ve embarked on an exciting journey, and we hope you will join us!"
- John Durant, Mark R. Epstein (Class of 1963) Director, MIT Museum
In May 2016, The City of Cambridge Planning Board unanimously approved special permits for the Initiative, which includes the development of six new buildings as well as a variety of new open spaces and retail venues. Read news article.
Local architects Höweler + Yoon Architecture have been engaged to design the Museum space, while the Germany-based firm Atelier Brückner has been selected to conduct museum experience master planning, including identifying the vision for public engagement and opportunities for the visitor experience.
Another project milestone was met in April 2017 when the Cambridge Planning Board approved the design of Site 5, the Museum’s new location. Meanwhile, prep work at the site, located adjacent to the Kendall T stop, is underway.
Design development has been completed, and the building was released for construction in April 2018.
A groundbreaking ceremony was held on October 9, 2018 with more than 200 in attendance. The festive event brought together community and MIT supporters. To great applause, John Durant, The Mark R. Epstein (Class of 1963) Director of the Museum, used the occasion to announce a Cambridge Resident Membership program with free admission for all Cambridge residents when the Museum opens in 2021.
Where will the new Museum be located?
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Will the current Museum be open until the new one opens?
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The Long View, Spectrum, Fall 2018
MIT to start work on a ‘new front door’ to the university, The Boston Globe, Oct. 9, 2018
John Durant plans a new era for the MIT Museum, MIT News, Sept. 28, 2017