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Philadelphia Museum breaks ground on Gehry-led expansion

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By Associated Press

The Philadelphia Museum of Art has broken ground on a $196 million expansion project led by world-renowned architect Frank Gehry.

Guests arrive at the North Entrance for a groundbreaking ceremony for planned renovations of the Philadelphia Museum of Art in Philadelphia, Thursday, March 30, 2017. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke) Manila BUlletin

Guests arrive at the North Entrance for a groundbreaking ceremony for planned renovations of the Philadelphia Museum of Art in Philadelphia, Thursday, March 30, 2017. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke) Manila Bulletin

Gehry was on hand Thursday for the event.

It involves gutting an old auditorium, which will open up over 23,000 square feet of new gallery space and allow more of the museum’s collection to be on display.

It also will involve refurbishing and reopening a 640-foot-long vaulted walkway — closed since the 1960s — that runs beneath the museum’s east terrace to the Schuylkill River on the west.

It’s the most extensive reworking of the museum’s interior in its 90-year history. It’s scheduled for completion in 2020.

The museum also announced a $525 million fundraising campaign to completely revamp the interior, enhance programming and add to the endowment.

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