September 18, 2008
Despite earlier predictions that the New Acropolis Museum would open this Autumn, it appears that the opening date has now shifted to early 2009. It is unclear if there is a specific reason for this dealy.
Fresh delay for Acropolis Museum
Tuesday 16 September 2008
Inauguration of Athens’ “ultra-modern” new Acropolis Museum has once again been delayed, Greek authorities announced. The brand-new facility features an empty room reserved for the Parthenon’s “Elgin marbles”, owned by the British Museum.
The opening of a new, ultra-modern Acropolis museum located below the ancient Athens landmark has been pushed back until February or March next year, Culture Minister Michalis Liapis said Tuesday.
“We had said the museum would open its doors towards the end of the year, but the inauguration will be delayed by two months or so,” said Liapis after a visit to the building.
A February or March opening was a more realistic goal, he added.
Liapis also said he was in talks with Greek choreographer Dimitris Papaioannou, who oversaw the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, about organising the inauguration ceremony for the new museum.
The new three-level museum, at 25,000 square metres (270,000 square feet), includes a room on the top floor with an area reserved for the Elgin, or Parthenon Marbles.
They are currently located at the British Museum in London, but Greece is continuing its campaign to persuade Britain to return the priceless friezes.
The British Museum in London has always refused to repatriate the friezes, removed in 1806 by Lord Elgin, British ambassador to the occupying Ottoman Empire of the time.
At the end of September the museum which is already partly open is scheduled to show ancient masterpieces to mark Athens’ determination to fight against what it has described as the pillaging of its antiquities.
The museum, designed by Franco-Swiss architect Bernard Tschumi, had originally been scheduled to open in time for the 2004 Olympics.
Those plans were derailed by a series of technical and bureaucratic problems that delayed the signing of the 129-million-euro building contract.
- New Acropolis Museum opening date set : February 21, 2008
- New Acropolis Museum opening date : February 13, 2009
- New Acropolis Museum to open in September : February 21, 2008
- Will the New Acropolis Museum win back the Elgin Marbles? : March 5, 2008
- Acropolis Museum delays impact opening date : February 28, 2004
- The New Acropolis Museum at Athens Airport : May 30, 2008
- Opening plans for the New Acropolis Museum : February 14, 2009
- June opening planned for the New Acropolis Museum : April 26, 2009