For me, the two most important buildings on campus are Firestone Library and the building housing the art museum, art library, and Department of Art & Archaeology (On the Campus, November issue). As an undergraduate, I walked past the art building every day and enjoyed exploring the marvelous objects inside. What an incredible place the museum is, so central to the mission and goals of the University — and now the museum is also a place for music, performances, and lectures for community members as well as students, faculty, and staff.
Princeton has an excellent collection of 112,000 objects, very few of which can currently be displayed at any one time, and badly needs a larger museum the likes of which its peers have enjoyed for years. The current building is about 70,000 square feet. The new building will be about 140,000 square feet, providing adequate space for the museum, library, and department. I have developed about 75 buildings similar in size to these.
Some have expressed concern about how the building will fit into this site. On Sept. 23, architect David Adjaye and museum director James Steward gave an excellent presentation of the new museum describing the design and addressing circulation around and through the space (see bit.ly/PUAM-new). Their design is well thought out and at long last adequately houses an excellent museum, library, and department right where they need to be for those who, like me, will wander by to serendipitously discover something that will spark a lifelong interest.