As we approach the second week of 2023, AN editors have rounded up the much-anticipated buildings, infrastructure projects, and parks slated to debut this year. With a heavy emphasis on museum and cultural institutions, 2023 is looking to be a strong year for architecture. And in case you missed it during the holidays, we gathered the top new stories, reviews, controversies, interiors, and more in our 2022 Year in Review.
Arkansas Museum of Fine Arts
Little Rock, Arkansas
On April 22 Little Rock leaders will open the doors of the Arkansas Museum of Fine Arts (AMFA) (formerly the Arkansas Arts Center). Along with a sweeping restoration of the original museum building’s 1937 art deco facade, the AMFA will also debut a new addition with a flowing, pleated concrete roof.
Leading the renovation on the museum is Studio Gang, working alongside local firm Polk Stanley Wilcox Architects as associate architect and landscape architecture and urban design practice SCAPE. The entire team has reimagined the 11-acre campus at historic MacArthur Park in downtown Little Rock.
Buffalo, New York
In Buffalo, New York the long-awaited expansion to the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, now the AKG Art Museum, will open on May 25. The year-in-the-making project led by OMA’s New York office will become one of Western New York’s most significant cultural centers with a new building, a sky bridge connecting existing galleries, a new courtyard, and revamped existing gallery spaces.
A hallmark of the renovation is the new Jeffrey E. Gundlach Building, a five-story, glass-clad building with a trapezoidal form. A key component of the reimagined cultural center will be improved circulation for both visitors and artworks.
Gilder Center at the American Museum of Natural History
Another Studio Gang–design ready for its 2023 debut is the Gilder Center at The American Museum of Natural History. The forthcoming addition, a collaboration between Studio Gang and Davis Brody Bond will bring a curvaceous facade clad with pink granite, a material chosen for its hue similar to that of the exterior on the main wing.
Inside, a four-story atrium reminiscent of a cave interior create a lobby and public gathering area with a large skylight and alcoves that form circulation and exhibition spaces as the building rises. It will open on February 17.
East Side Access/Grand Central Madison
Metropolitan Transportation Authority
While the Metropolitan Transportation Authority had hoped for a late 2022 completion for East Side Access, a massive capital project that will bring Long Island Rail Road commuters, tourists, and other passengers from Long Island to Grand Central Terminal, it is now targeting a January open date. With 40 miles of new tracks and a new station, dubbed Grand Central Madison, outfitted with corridors and access to Grand Central, passengers coming from out east can now disembark at Grand Central or they can continue journeys north to the suburbs and beyond with in-station connections to Metro-North Railroad.
The 350,000-square-foot Grand Central Madison station will offer spacious waiting areas, retail and restaurants opportunities, ticketing offices as well as new site-specific art installations from artists Yayoi Kusama and Kiki Smith.
Hunters Point substation renovation
Tatiana Bilbao Estudio
On the West Coast, the site of a former power plant in San Francisco’s Hunters Point neighborhood is undergoing a major overhaul. The reimagined site by Mexico City–based firm Tatiana Bilbao Estudio and local studio TEF Design, slated to open in the fall, will bring a new three-story rammed earth–like structure that will house electrical utilities and be surrounded by a plaza and community gardens.
The new development replaces a former power plant managed by PG&E that shuttered in 2006, ridding the area of the emissions that proved to be detrimental to the neighborhood.
The Frick renovation
The Frick Collection will forgo its temporary stint on Madison Avenue at the former location of the Met Breuer (2016–2020) and the Whitney Museum of American Art (1966–2014) and return to its now newly renovated home on East 70th Street.
A sweeping expansion and renovation of the 1914 building by Selldorf Architects will bring forth new exhibition space and opportunities for conservation and public programming, while also updating amenities and improving accessibility across the site. It is the first major upgrade of the building since it opened its doors to the public over 80 years ago.
International African American Museum
Pei Cobb Freed & Partners and Hood Design Studio
Charleston, South Carolina
The International African American Museum (IAAM), situated at the port where nearly half of all enslaved Africans sent to North America disembarked, will open this year. The ground-up, one-story building designed by Pei Cobb Freed & Partners transforms the former site of Gadsden’s Wharf. It will be conceived as a brick structure hoisted up by several structural columns.
In addition to gallery space for exhibiting its robust permanent collection on the history of African Americans and enslavement, the museum will also house temporary exhibition spaces, a theater, a cafe, gift shop, and Family History Center. Working alongside Pei Cobb Freed & Partners as landscape designers is Hood Design Studio.
One River North
In Denver MAD Architects and local firm Davis Partnership will complete the new residential building One River North late this year. The all-glass facade of the building will spilt down its center to reveal a landscaped canyon connecting people with nature. The walls of the canyon are created using a prefabricated panelized framework system of #3 rebar with mesh applied to support the plaster and create the canyon’s texture.
One River North will rise 16 stories in Denver’s River North (RiNo) neighborhood with 187 apartments and over 13,000 square feet of open air spaces.
Heartland of America Park and Lewis and Clark Landing
OJB Landscape Architecture
This summer saw the completion and opening of the revamped 9.6-acre Gene Leahy Mall in downtown Omaha, Nebraska. The 50,000-square-foot lawn houses a performance pavilion, playgrounds, and loads of park space. The Mall was designed by OJB Landscape Architecture for the Metropolitan Entertainment & Convention Authority (MECA) as part of a master plan to oversee the revitalization of park venues across the city.
The other green spaces undergoing a revamp are the Heartland of America Park and Lewis and Clark Landing. Both parks are situated along the city’s riverfront and boast a list of exciting new amenities including a skating rink for winter and summer activity, bocce courts, playgrounds, renovated marina, and an urban beach.