In these unprecedented times, LACMA’s first priority is the health and safety of our staff, volunteers, visitors, and neighbors. While we are temporarily closed to the public to slow the spread of COVID-19, we look forward to welcoming everyone back to the west side of campus when we are able to reopen.
Both the County and City of Los Angeles have declared building construction to be an essential activity, and the County has strongly urged us to continue moving forward in our work in the construction of our new building for the permanent collection. As you may know, the new building will replace the Ahmanson, Art of the Americas, Bing, and Hammer buildings, which had significant structural problems. Thanks to the hard work of many over the last several years, our building project is continuing on schedule. All of the enabling activities required in advance of construction were completed before the coronavirus crisis unfolded, allowing us to continue hazmat abatement and internal demolition and proceed with hard demolition as planned.
Beginning this week, hard demolition has started and will continue for several months in accordance with all applicable guidelines. We are also making every effort to keep our neighbors informed of the work schedule and are responding to any concerns about the ongoing construction.
- Both LACMA and our general contractor, Clark Construction, are working diligently to ensure a safe work environment for the crews working on the site. To that end, Clark Construction and its subcontractors have taken all necessary protective measures in accordance with government guidelines.
- As in all of their ongoing projects throughout the country, Clark Construction is requiring that all work be done in accordance with OSHA guidelines and industry best practices, with workers in full protective gear, enhanced cleaning protocols, and social distancing rules.
- Hazmat abatement and internal demolition crews are fitted with full-body clothing/hazmat suits, gloves, eye protection, and breathing equipment, and all personnel working outside the buildings are required at all times to wear protective gloves, eye protection, face covering, and head protection.
- All workers are required to exercise social distancing of six feet or more, and all indoor meetings have been eliminated.
- Additional hand washing stations have been installed and the frequency with which they are cleaned and supplied has been increased.
- Workers are encouraged to wash hands frequently and anyone who exhibits any respiratory symptoms is required to quarantine at home.
An Engine for Recovery
During difficult times like these, there is an unquantifiable benefit for LACMA to reaffirm our commitment to our mission and our community by moving forward with the building project. We expect our project to be an important source of job creation, with as many as up to 4,000 people working on our construction project at some point through the next four years. Having already reached $650 million in campaign pledges and almost 90% of the total campaign goal completed, LACMA’s board of trustees recently reaffirmed its commitment to the project, recognizing that our new building is a powerful and visible signal to Los Angeles of renewed vitality and an engine for recovery after this crisis.
We wish you good health and look forward to welcoming you back to LACMA when it is safe to reopen, with wonderful exhibitions on view in BCAM and the Resnick Pavilion.