New Exhibit Space, Theater, and Restaurant
IMEG provided structural engineering and design services for the Nancy and Rich Kinder Building at the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston. The new 237,000-sf, three-story building features 102,366-sf of exhibition space for modern and contemporary art, a 215-seat theater, restaurant and café, underground parking, and pedestrian tunnels connecting it to the museum’s existing gallery buildings and new Glassell School of Art. Completed in November 2020, the building adds a refreshing cultural center for the city.
The vision of the architect was to create a space that mimicked the shifting shapes of clouds. The large ceilings, windows, and space for ambient lighting to accomplish this were supported by a concrete perimeter and steel support for each floor and the trussed roof. The interior is spacious at times and constrained in others to accent the pieces and artwork showcased, so the structural support of the building fluctuates to accommodate this while also matching the visual style of the building and the museum.
The museum provides the Houston community with easier access to culture and modern art in a way unlike other cities. The welcoming atmosphere and structure of the Kinder Building are inviting and also support the themes and established visual tones of the surrounding, growing museum campus.
ENR Texas & Louisiana 2021 Best Project