Guggenheim Abu Dhabi “on hold”

October 26, 2011

The emirate of Abu Dhabi has put plans for the Frank Gehry-designed Guggenheim satellite on SaadiyatIsland on hold, reports The Art Newspaper. The 24,000-square-meter museum is slated to be one of four institutions in the planned cultural district.

Construction has been halted since the government gave back the tender for the concrete works to the 11 international contractors who submitted bids. However, the Tourism Development and Investment Company (TDIC) says that the museum is not being canceled. Rather, the TDIC has revised the museum’s opening date from 2013 to 2015, according to a spokeswoman for the organization.

When interviewed by The Art Newspaper on October 11 about the Abu Dhabi site, Guggenheim director Richard Armstrong admitted that construction had slowed down. He added the qualification: “But I don’t always know everything that is going on there.” Furthermore, he denied rumors that architects had not been paid and were walking off the job.

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