Jacksonville Area Museum Kicks Off Phase II Expansion

By Benjamin Cox on February 28, 2024 at 7:48am

The Jacksonville Area Museum is getting ready to debut a major exhibit and begin the next phase of its expansion.

Museum Manager McKenna Servis spoke on last Friday’s What’s On Your Mind program about the upcoming Jacksonville Developmental Center exhibit set to debut in April.

In the meantime, the Jacksonville Area Museum’s Facebook Page revealed on Sunday that expansion into the former sorting area and warehouse of the Old Post Office building has officially begun. Bids are currently out for the heating, air, electric, and the prepping of space to house exhibits. The post says it is the first of many steps that will more than double the size of the museum.

Museum Board members say that the museum will be able to offer more programs and provide greater outreach to the community with the possibilities in the expanded space.

Servis says that the JDC exhibit will be somewhat mobile as the museum’s volunteer staff will navigate the ongoing construction work: “Right now, the JDC exhibit will enter the West Gallery where the Capps Exhibit is; but with the project we are making with our expansion campaign, we are expecting that this exhibit may move around the building a little bit depending upon what the building is going to look like. It may open in the West Gallery and move to the front hallway. It may shrink and expand as we need it to, but it’s a story that needs to be told and it has taken us 2 years to get to a place where we feel like we can tell it appropriately. We don’t have any intentions of putting it away unless we absolutely need to for construction purposes. We’re going to try our best to keep it up in its whole, finished, completed product form before we have to shift as the building changes.”

Operations of the museum may be somewhat impacted by the ongoing work. Museum board members say that the staff will attempt to keep disruptions to a minimum. Follow the Jacksonville Area Museum on Facebook to follow the Phase II progress.