Broad Art Museum delay disappoints neighbors

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By Jessica McGregor and Marisol Dorantes

Entirely East Lansing staff writers

In front of the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum construction site, a sign reads “Opening Spring 2012.” Grand River Avenue has hosted construction crews for almost two years since the groundbreaking in March 2010. Many business owners and local citizens eagerly await the completion of the project.

Lindsey Santola, manager of Moosejaw, said construction of the museum has been a hindrance because people can no longer see Moosejaw from campus and this has caused a decline in the “between-class flow” it used to have during the school year.

Hanna O’Neill, another manager Moosejaw, said that in a small way construction of the Broad Art Museum is positively affecting their business because construction workers have been coming into Moosejaw for supplies.

While business has changed at Moosejaw, Matthew Gabrish, an employee at The Record Lounge said that business flow is usually slow during this time period and the construction has not changed anything.

Businesses along Grand River hope that with the opening of the museum, more visitors will be attracted to East Lansing, and the traffic will boost sales.

Unfortunately, the East Lansing community will have to wait a while longer.

The windows, which are imported from Germany and essential to the aesthetics of the museum, are the incorrect proportions for the frames. This has caused the opening of the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum to be delayed until the fall of 2012.

With no specific date for the opening of the museum, the setback could take up to the end of fall 2012. This does not sit well with some, as many East Lansing citizens expressed that they were eager to see the end result as well as get rid of the construction crews.

Gabrish did say the museum does not really fit the landscape of East Lansing and he hopes that the façade of the museum does not take away from the feel of the city.

Kayla Holcomb, manager of La Bodega, agrees with Gabrish, saying she does not like the modern look. It reminds her of a spaceship and does not fit in the Michigan State campus.

Holcomb likes MSU campus’ old feel and with the buildings in East Lansing being brick faced, Holcomb said the museum should have gone along with that theme or it should have been built further into campus around the other, more modern buildings.

As for construction? Holcomb said it has not affected her business but it is an eyesore.

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