The largest whaling museum in the world, the New Bedford Whaling Museum (NBWM) selected Machado Silvetti to assist them in developing a comprehensive long range Master Plan for their entire campus including conceptual design for a new 30,000 sqf expansion. The NBWM is notable for its large and diverse collection, which includes four complete whale-skeletons, “The Grand Panorama of a Whaling Voyage ‘Round the World”, the longest painting in North America, and the half-scale model of the whaling ship, Lagoda, the largest model ship in the world.
The Master Plan provides a framework for sustainable long range growth through phased expansion and renovation projects to reorganize, enhance and add to the NBWM’s campus.
The Master Plan prioritized a seamlessly integration of their new property into a contiguous and visitor-centric whole of the campus with the goal to further position the Museum as the cultural hub and destination in the heart of the city and the Southcoast. Thereby, achieving NBWM’s mission, “To ignite learning through explorations of art, history, science and culture rooted in the stories of people, the region and an international seaport.”
The William St. Expansion project, the first phase of the Master Plan, is located on a newly acquired site, directly across from the NBWM’s existing entrance. The team studied a wide range of options for the project’s size and siting, and how to best connect the new building to the existing complex across an active historic street. The new building will provide a public lobby, expanded gift shop and small cafe, open and flexible gallery space for temporary exhibitions, and, at the third level, a new and expanded events space with sweeping views to the harbor.