After $21 million campaign, Atlanta History Center plans 21st-century transformation

Capital improvements planned for the Atlanta History Museum will affect over 37,000 square feet of the building, including the creation of a new West Paces Ferry Road entrance facade and enlarged 5,300-square-foot atrium, an updating of the museum’s public spaces and the addition of new connections within the building. CONTRIBUTED BY ATLANTA HISTORY CENTER

Capital improvements planned for the Atlanta History Museum will affect over 37,000 square feet of the building, including the creation of a new West Paces Ferry Road entrance facade and enlarged 5,300-square-foot atrium, an updating of the museum’s public spaces and the addition of new connections within the building. CONTRIBUTED BY ATLANTA HISTORY CENTER

Seeking to forge a stronger connection with the growing metro community and to attract a new generation of visitors who demand fresh approaches to understanding the past, the Atlanta History Center is unveiling plans for a major 21st-century makeover Thursday.

The big items on its long list of projects are a more welcoming main entrance on West Paces Ferry Road and an of-the-moment permanent Atlanta history exhibition. But there is virtually no part of the leafy 33-acre Buckhead campus that will be untouched by enhancements.

The transformation will be paid for with $21.1 million raised in a just-completed capital campaign, easily the largest in the august institution’s 88-year history.

Other aspects will include the shifting of the front entrance so that it leads straight into the corridor housing most of the museum’s permanent exhibits. Their sheet-rocked entry walls will be opened up with floor-to-ceiling glass.

A bookstore-bistro, also glass-fronted, will be added beside the main entrance, accessible without admission. And the lobby/atrium will be expanded to 5,300 square feet to better accommodate center and private functions.

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