Unless your idea of museum culture happens to be a new Mob Museum, as staunchly supported by Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman, the picking in the Las Vegas Valley are becoming sparse to get that old time museum feeling.
The Las Vegas Art Museum, which opened in 1997, has closed a couple of weeks ago and has joined the growing roster of cultural institutions that have suspended their operations in the face of a weakening economy. Following suit, the plans for an upscale art gallery and museum proposed for downtown Las Vegas were nixed after being in the works for years.
But, don’t give up the museum culture ship just yet. Down south of Las Vegas in Henderson, Nevada the 15-year-old idea to build a science museum has taken a step closer to become a reality. The Henderson City Council on February 17 approved an initial plan for a 51,600-square-foot museum on 150 city-owned acres near U.s. 95 and Galleria Drive.
With most Henderson residents supporting such a museum, it would be the centerpiece of a mixed-use development that would likely include restaurants, retail space, and condominiums.
Last year the City of Henderson paid $200,000 to consultants for advice on what kind of museum would best suit the area.
The museum would likely focus on “scientific accomplishments and issues in Southern Nevada” and would cost about $61 million and could draw 300,000 visitors annually, the consultants said.
The next step toward a museum is to adopt a master plan for the area, which would outline zoning changes and designs. That would take about five months for the staff to create a plan to show the Henderson City Council.