DAYTON, OH.- The Dayton Art Institute
has announced plans for a summer renovation project that will combine its Café and Museum Store into a new community gathering space.
We will create a new community gathering place where visitors experience an open floor plan that unites The Café and The Museum Store, and offers extended and more consistent hours,
#157; says DAI Executive Director Michael R. Roediger. This new space will be all about serving visitors and making them feel welcome at DAI, by providing a fuller museum experience. Guests will enjoy coffee, wine, food, shopping and more, to inspire them to return on a regular basis."
The plan calls for combining the existing Museum Store, Fifth Third Private Dining Room and Café spaces into a new open area, easily accessible from the museums General Motors Entrance Rotunda. This new space will allow The Café to remain open independent of the museum, with greater visibility and opportunities for wine tastings and food events. The new configuration will also mean greater visibility and increased traffic for The Museum Store.
The combined space will allow visitors to relax and recharge while dining and shopping. Wi-Fi, made possible by a federal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) grant the museum received in 2011, will be available in the new space, as well as throughout the museum galleries. Roediger sees the new space appealing not only to regular museum visitors, but also to young professionals, students, artists and downtown residents.
Of the census tracts that make up the city of Dayton, the downtown tract grew by more than 17 percent in the last decade,
#157; notes DAI Associate Director Jane A. Black. People live downtown and want great entertainment close to home. That increase in downtown population is something we believe DAI must work to capitalize on, by being both an art museum and an entertainment center."
The project, designed by Mitolo Studio, Inc. of Dayton, will cost an estimated $250,000. A private benefactor has agreed to fund $200,000 of the project.
Construction will begin when the current special exhibition Changing Landscapes closes on June 17, with the new space slated to open for the beginning of Oktoberfest on September 21. The Café and The Museum Store will be temporarily relocated downstairs, off the special exhibition galleries, during construction.