Sep 14, 2023 - Music

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame to break ground on $135 million expansion

A architectural design of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame's expansion.

Here's what $135 million gets you. Rendering: Courtesy of the Rock Hall/PAU architecture firm

The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame says it will break ground on its 50,000-square-foot, $135 million expansion next month.

Why it matters: The project, announced Tuesday, is intended to increase attendance and revenue for Cleveland's most prestigious tourist attraction.

  • The Rock Hall says it draws a half-million visitors a year and generates an annual economic impact of $250 million.

Catch-up quick: The museum first revealed its expansion plan in 2020.

  • Museum officials raised $135 million for the project — well above its initial target of $100 million — almost all from private donors.

Details: The project will expand the Rock Hall from 155,000 square feet to 205,000 square feet, including a 10,000-square-foot gallery for large traveling exhibits it couldn't previously house, including the Brooklyn Museum's David Bowie showcase in 2018.

  • The expansion will also include 6,000 square feet for administrative offices, a state-of-the-art education center and a concert facility that can fit nearly 3,000 people.
Side image of the Rock Hall's $135 million expansion.
Photo courtesy of the Rock Hall/PAU architecture firm

Between the lines: The groundbreaking comes as the Rock Hall prepares to induct the class of 2023 at a Nov. 3 ceremony in Brooklyn, New York.

What they're saying: "Thirty years after we broke ground on the original structure, we embark on this next chapter in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame's legacy, including expanding the museum's world-class education and exhibition offerings," Rock Hall CEO Greg Harris said in a statement.

What's next: The Rock Hall will host a ceremonial groundbreaking on Oct. 5 with actual construction work to begin before November.

  • The museum will remain open throughout the expansion, which is expected to be completed in mid-2026.

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