31 July 2018

First Look At New Saint John Museum

CHSJ News Posted on Tuesday, July 31, 2018

It will probably be another five years before the new New Brunswick Museum is built and open to the public, but we are getting an idea what it might look like.

The preliminary design was unveiled at the current museum on Tuesday night and the public had the chance to say what they thought of it.

Some described it as spectacular and contemporary, among other things, and Malcolm Boyd of Murdock and Boyd Architects told our newsroom they really wanted to open up the views to the harbour.

"It's a curve," said Boyd. "It curves not only horizontally but vertically out, so each floor gets successively wider as you go up the building."

Boyd said the curved design is based on museum artifcats and a lot of New Brunswick's history.

"The skeletons of the whale bones within the museum, if you look inside of a whale, you'll get the curved ribs," he said. "Shipbuilding in Saint John, if you look at the ribs and how ships were built, they had these ribs."

Shannon Merrifield, chair of the museum's board of directors, said she loves the curved design of the building.

"The comments that I've heard have been very thoughtful," says Merrifield. "People are excited about the project, they're enthused with the design."

Officials will hold more open houses across New Brunswick in the coming weeks to gather more feedback.