Anchorage Museum Expansion designed by UK-based firm David Chipperfield Architects will be opened to public on 30 May 2009. Five distinct linear volumes vary in height and length arranged along the western face of the current constructing, creating an interesting skyline to the west side of the current museum. The glass facade is fitted with striped mirror pattern, enabling the visual connection among inside and outdoors, and reflecting the sky and surrounding atmosphere.
The organization of the new creating is based on 5 linear volumes of varying length and height arranged along the western face of the current constructing. This arrangement forms a new facade and entrance facing downtown Anchorage. The new developing delivers windows by way of which the activity of the museum is observed. The visitor, from within, is re-oriented to the city context and its extraordinary all-natural setting beyond. The glass facade of the new four-storey building is fitted with a striped mirror pattern, supplying views out of and into the museum and reflecting the sky and surrounding mountainous environment.
The interior design concept exposes the concrete structure as element of the character of the internal spaces. Walls are constructed amongst columns to establish a series of rooms within the new constructing. The main public spaces – the entrance lobby, circulation atrium, cafe, and exhibition spaces – use distinct colors and materials to give each its own identity. Windows have been positioned in all non-exhibition spaces and some exhibition spaces.
The Anchorage Museum Expansion will also house the Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center, exhibiting 600 Alaska Native ethnographic artifacts from the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural Background and National Museum of the American Indian. The new Widespread developed in front of the museum will provide a new public space for downtown Anchorage.