The Tate Modern, London's massive modern art museum on the Thames, will officially open its forthcoming Herzog & de Meuron-designed extension next June, a long-awaited 21,000-square-meter (226,042–square-foot) addition. The 10-story, pyramidal structure, which will contain dedicated space for installations and performance art as well as a roof-top public terrace, will sit atop the old oil tanks of the Bankside Power Station, the structure Herzog & de Meuron initially transformed into the Tate in 2000 to much acclaim. It's all part of a £260 million project set to expand gallery space at the Tate by 60%, an addition that missed its initial 2012 opening date tied to the Olympics.
The new tower, which Jacques Herzog has compared to "a little city," will provide a symbolic new silhouette for the Tate, echoing the brick chimney that stands at the front of the museum. It also adds a modern touch to the long, rectilinear form of the main building, a structure left mostly intact during its initial conversion into a cultural center. The Tate has brought in record-shattering traffic ever since it opened (7.9 million visitors last year), and has served as a catalyst for neighborhood development. The additional crowds, as well as the growth of installation and media art, made an expansion, and the addition of a new kind of display space, a priority for the institution.
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