Work on the new Shenzhen Art Museum will start before the end of the year, according to a meeting of the city on expediting the construction of 10 new cultural landmarks Oct. 29.
The new museum is located in the Shenzhen North Railway Station business area in Longhua District.
The existing art museum, built in the 1980s inside Donghu Park, Luohu District, is relatively small with a floor space of 2,800 square meters and exhibition area of 1,200 square meters, which is far smaller than the museums in cities like Suzhou, Nanjing, Ningbo and Qingdao, and needless to say first-tier cities like Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. It couldn’t be expanded because it is located inside the water resources protection area.
The city decided to set up a new museum in May 2013. The new site will have a total of 12 exhibition halls and will be divided into different functional areas, including display, collection, reserve, exchange, public service and office areas.
At the end of 2018, Shenzhen unveiled its plan to build 10 new cultural facilities in three years that cater to the city’s ambition to develop into a world-class metropolis.
The 10 facilities are Shenzhen Opera House, Shenzhen Reform and Opening up Exhibition Hall, Creative Design Hall, Shenzhen Hall of the National Museum of China, Shenzhen Science and Technology Museum, Shenzhen Marine Museum, Shenzhen Nature Museum, new Hall of Shenzhen Art Museum, Shenzhen Innovation and Creative Design Academy and Shenzhen Conservatory of Music.
So far, the architectural design for Shenzhen Science and Technology Museum has been decided. Work on the new museum will start before the end of the year and will be completed in 2023.
The 2.1-billion-yuan (US$297 million) project in Guangming District occupies 66,000 square meters of land and includes a 50,000-sqm park for science popularization.
The related departments are conducting a feasibility study on the construction of Shenzhen Opera House, Shenzhen Reform and Opening up Exhibition Hall. Shenzhen Nature Museum will be settled in Pingshan District, which is known for its unique and beautiful natural environment, cultural heritage and innovation vitality. The project is located in the Yanzi Lake area of Pingshan CBD and will be a large, comprehensive and world-leading museum of natural history.
The Shenzhen Marine Museum will be built in Dapeng New Area, and Shenzhen Conservatory of Music will be built in the International University Town area in Longgang District.
The Shenzhen Nature Museum includes a natural heritage museum that covers 40,200 square meters and an outdoor natural science theme park that covers 60,000 square meters. With a floor space of 120,000 square meters, the modern facility will be a leading museum in China in the collection and display of historical heritage and natural specimens and a base for natural science research and popularization.
Historically, Shenzhen has undergone two massive rounds of cultural facility construction, once in the 1980s and again in the new millennium.
In the 1980s, eight landmark cultural facilities, including Shenzhen Museum, Shenzhen Library and Shenzhen Grand Theater, were built, and since 2000, five major projects in Futian CBD, including Shenzhen Concert Hall, Shenzhen Library (New Library) and Shenzhen Book City CBD Store, have been built. Some sports facilities, such as Universiade Sports Center in Longgang and Shenzhen Bay Sports Center, were built for the 2011 Summer Universiade.
However, compared to other first-tier cities like Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, Shenzhen still lags behind in cultural facilities. Beijing and Shanghai have 179 and 125 museums, respectively, while the number in Shenzhen is only 47, which is 14 fewer than in Guangzhou. As for performance venues, Shenzhen has 11, a quarter of the number in Beijing and Shanghai.