Controversy around the proposed expansion of Park City's Kimball Art Center just keeps getting hotter, with proponents praising the new design as the town's Eiffel Tower and critics complaining it looks like something from Los Angeles (sorry L.A.). Most everyone agrees that it's a good thing that the Kimball Art Center, a Park City Main Street landmark since 1976, is expanding by adding 15,000 square feet and undergoing an interior renovation that aims to mark the Utah ski town as "an emerging national arts destination." They've hired the young Danish architect Bjarke Ingels of the Bjarke Ingles Group (BIG) to do the design in conjunction with the Elliot Work Group out of Park City. But that's pretty much where consensus stops. We've got all the drama and a few lingering questions (like who is that blond woman in the design?).
Locals hated an earlier, much maligned twisty timber design most often criticized for its height. In a Curbed Ski architecture show down, the twisty log cabin design won by a landslide, but the ever-flexible BIG listened to the public and changed the plans, instead proposing a (boring?) 46-foot modern structure with two slanted concrete walls. It seems you just can't make everyone happy, and at least 320 people have emailed comments to City Hall in recent weeks. Fortunately for Bjarke and company, only 67 of those messages were opposed to the current plans, so it looks like concrete minimalism is a go for Park City. But seriously, can anyone tell us who the blond woman is?
· Kimball Art Center [Official Site]
· Sloping Concrete or Twisty Timber: Which Works in Park City? [Curbed Ski]
· All Kimball Art Center Coverage [Curbed Ski Archives]
· All Park City Coverage [Curbed Ski Archives]