Jul
20

Today in Smithsonian History: July 20, 1979

A photograph of the model of the Quadrangle, a complex of buildings that contain the Sackler Gallery, National Museum of African Art, S. Dillon Ripley Center, and the South Yard behind the Smithsonian Institution Building, or "Castle," and the Arts and Industries Building. The project of building the Quadrangle was begun in 1979. Opened in 1987, the complex, with three stories underground, is covered by the Enid A. Haupt Garden.

A photograph of the model of the Quadrangle, a complex of buildings that contain the Sackler Gallery, National Museum of African Art, S. Dillon Ripley Center, and the South Yard behind the Smithsonian Institution Building, or “Castle,” and the Arts and Industries Building. The project of building the Quadrangle was begun in 1979. Opened in 1987, the complex, with three stories underground, is covered by the Enid A. Haupt Garden. (Photographer unknown, ca. 1979, via Smithsonian Institution Archives.

July 20, 1979 President Jimmy Carter signs a bill (P.L. 96-36) authorizing the appropriation of $500,000 for planning of the South Quadrangle Project. The Quadrangle will be located behind the Smithsonian Institution Building or “Castle,” and will be a center for African, Near Eastern and Asian cultures.

Courtesy of Smithsonian Institution Archives

Artist's rendering of the reimagined South Mall Campus at night

The Smithsonian has announced an ambitious plan to renovate and redesign the South Mall Campus in the coming decades, including this artist’s rendering of the reimagined South Mall Campus at night.

In 2014, the Smithsonian announced a dramatic plan to reimagine and revitalize several of its museums and gardens—including the iconic Castle—in what may be the most ambitious project on the National Mall in more than century.

Designed by the award-winning Danish architectural firm BIG, the Bjarke Ingels Group, the proposed plan’s centerpiece is the revitalization of the Castle and includes expanded visitor services; new Mall-facing entrances to the National Museum of African Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery; and improved visibility and access from the Freer Gallery of Art to the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. Read more >>


Posted: 20 July 2018
About the Author:

The Torch relies on contributions from the entire Smithsonian community.