Cape Ann Museum Renovations

Gloucester, MA
20,000 SF
Project Type:
Historic Renovation
Construction Management
designLab Architects
Owner's Rep:
KVA Associates
2015 Paul E. Tsongas Preservation Award; 2015 BRAGB Silver PRISM Award (commercial project)

Founded in 1873, the Cape Ann Museum is home to world-class art and artifact collections that reflect the rich history of the region. Having gone decades without any significant upgrades to their gallery spaces, it was time for the museum to explore the possibility of renovations as a means to improve visitor experience and to better convey the story of its collections.

That is when the museum turned to Windover to help achieve their desired construction objectives. Among many, these included a clearer visitor reception and entry, improved internal environment, enhanced lighting, reconfiguration of 13 galleries, better security, and new finishes throughout including flooring, ceilings, and museum quality walls. Significant mechanical, electrical, and plumbing upgrades behind the walls were required in order to introduce the new systems and gallery layouts. Working with the museum and design team, we facilitated a process that balanced renovation priorities with available capital funds. In addition to hitting the museum’s primary objectives for the project, this careful management of budget also allowed scope to be added late in design. This included the incorporation of a special gallery to house an 1860’s first-order Fresnel Lens which has become an important mainstay for the museum.