Plans for the £6million expansion of Turner Contemporary in Margate will be shared at an event this month.
The Turner Contemporary Phase 2 scheme will be a combination of new build refurbishment and reconfiguration at the gallery.
The project seeks to bring forward new build and refurbishment options for Turner Contemporary while at the same time potentially exploring the opportunities for the adjacent Rendezvous site.
The scheme would be funded by £3 million from Arts Council England (ACE) and around £2.6 million of KCC funding with the remainder made up from other sources.
Turner Contemporary says the work is necessary because of high visitor numbers. Since opening in 2011, Turner Contemporary has had more than 2.8 million visits and says it has generated £68 million for the local economy.
A statement says: “The organisation’s success in attracting far higher visitor numbers than originally anticipated has meant that the building is now at capacity and increasing demand is threatening to compromise the high quality cultural offer, and the quality of the visitor experience.
“Hence, we plan to make changes to the building in order for it to be more sustainable, and provide an even better, more accessible experience for our visitors. Whilst being sensitive to the integrity of the architecture, we will reconfigure the building to enable us to work even more creatively, connect with more visitors, artists, children and young people, increase cultural tourism and generate vital income to support our work.”
The event on September 19 will allow those taking part to find out about the design development, capital project, timescales and ideas from Avanti architects and ask questions.
Any changes to the building will be subject to a successful funding application to Arts Council England. A Stage 2 application will be submitted by December 14.
The proposal for the Turner Rooms is aimed at securing the financial future for the gallery, saying it will: “provide a residential component to the gallery’s facilities, accommodating visitors and group events, such as conferences, that are related to the Turner Contemporary programme.
“The hostel contains 100 simple, functional sea-facing rooms across four levels, which are designed to be accessible in price and flexible in arrangement. Meeting rooms, social spaces, and a cafe/brasserie will be located on the lower levels of the building, and open out onto the surrounding terrace.”
Margate RNLI branch is already looking for a new base. The current site will become untenable as Turner Contemporary carries out its expansion plans.
The branch will be served notice when the lease expires in April 2021 for the current boathouse which is based behind Turner Contemporary. The boathouse is also too small to house the new Shannon all-weather lifeboat, meaning a larger venue is needed.
To book a place at the event, which runs from 6pm to 8pm, click here