The Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michaels, Md., has announced updates to Phase I of its new Master Plan, which will create increased space for CBMM’s core museum offerings—including exhibitions, education, and in the shipyard. CBMM announced its Master Plan in May 2018, the culmination of a process begun a year earlier under the leadership of President Kristen Greenaway.
The scope of the plan is broad, addressing all facets of the physical campus, including new and re-oriented buildings, wayfinding, guest accessibility and comforts, and prioritizing CBMM’s natural, waterfront environment. Phase I of the Master Plan originally called for one, two-story building to replace and upgrade CBMM’s Waterfowling, Bay History, Welcome Center, and Library and Collections facilities.
“Following an analysis of the projected cost of a single building to solve both our exhibition and archival storage challenges, we determined that focusing the new building on exhibition needs, and expanding the usable space in our existing library and collections is a more cost effective alternative,” said CBMM President Kristen Greenaway. “Design work is progressing simultaneously on the new exhibition building, led by Ann Beha Architects, and the renovation of the existing library and curatorial storage building on Mill Street, led by Atelier 11.”
Ann Beha Architects of Boston, Mass., was chosen to develop CBMM’s Master Plan in July 2017, with the process including a series of visioning sessions, with input gathered from community members, CBMM’s Board of Governors and Friends Board, staff, and volunteers. Through a competitive RFP process, Atelier 11 Architecture of Easton, Md. was chosen in late 2018 for the library and collections renovations, with the Gilbane Building Company chosen to serve as CBMM’s exhibition building construction manager.
Phase I now consists of the construction of a new, one-story building for changing exhibitions and a long-term waterfowling exhibition, along with landscaping upgrades to Navy Point. 5,000 square feet will also be added for researchers, curatorial work, and storage to CBMM’s current library and archives building.
The new Exhibition Building will replace CBMM’s current Bay History and Waterfowling exhibition buildings, with the buildings’ artifacts to be relocated, and demolition anticipated to begin in late 2019. Construction of the library addition is expected to begin in 2020. The new library and exhibition buildings are anticipated to open in 2021.
“CBMM’s Master Plan is a vision for CBMM’s campus for the next 20 years, and is designed to greatly enhance the guest experience,” continued Greenaway. “The Master Plan will support CBMM’s mission and world-class maritime museum status by enabling CBMM to offer new and expanded programming.”
CBMM’s Master Plan also includes raising the grade of new buildings and walkways above regulated limits, in anticipation of long-term needs. Work has already begun re-grading the shipyard, as CBMM prepares for construction of the newest reproduction of the 17th century ship Maryland Dove, which officially begins June 1 at CBMM’s Maritime Day.
Three phases make up the Master Plan, with the scope and timeline expected to be seven to ten years, contingent upon funding. Funding sources are planned to come from individual donations and naming opportunities, grants, and operations. Phases II and Phase III will focus on further expanding CBMM’s education and Shipyard capabilities.
The public is invited to a Community Forum on Tuesday, June 4, from 5:30-7:00 p.m. in CBMM’s Van Lennep Auditorium, when CBMM will host a community conversation and share more information about the updated Phase I of the Master Plan.
Established in 1965, the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum is a world-class maritime museum dedicated to preserving and exploring the history, environment, and culture of the entire Chesapeake Bay, with the values of relevancy, authenticity, and stewardship guiding its mission. To learn more about the Master Plan, visit cbmm.org/masterplan.