Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Bidding War for New Museum

Back in May I fantasized about a future in which cities bid for museums, competing with offers of support and location, in order to attract valued cultural amenities. Now this is is actually happening in California, where Santa Monica, Beverly Hills and an anonymous contender are vying to be the location of Eli Broad's new museum.

I'm not sure whether this is quite what I had in mind--this article reports that "Broad would be paying for all but a small percentage of the design and construction costs" while Santa Monica is offering to pony up about $1 million towards construction, and offering a lease on the site for a "nominal amount." Still, it's kinda nice to see cities trash talking each other in pursuit of cultural amenities. Maybe the next step will include courting organizations that aren't bankrolled by billionaires..

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