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In Expansion, Gardner Museum Goes Green

This article is more than 9 years old.
The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum is "going green" as it expands. (Ben Johnson/Shawmut Design and Construction)
The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum is "going green" as it expands. (Ben Johnson/Shawmut Design and Construction)

As the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum works toward completing its new building and expansion project, it's also "going green" by digging wells far beneath the ground.

Museum Director Anne Hawley said workers have gone down 1,500 feet and are nearly done drilling eight geothermal wells to heat and cool the new building.

"Museums are real energy mongers," Hawley said, "because you have to keep the temperature at about 65 degrees in the galleries, and also the humidity at about 50 percent."

Hawley also said the Gardner Museum has raised $100 million towards an estimated campaign goal of $180 million. The new building is estimated to cost approximately $115 million in the end.

The new building's final design, by rock-star architect Renzo Piano, will be unveiled in early 2010.

This program aired on October 28, 2009. The audio for this program is not available.

Andrea Shea Twitter Senior Arts Reporter
Andrea Shea is WBUR's arts reporter.

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