Over the course of several years, we will radically transform our National Mall building, all 23 galleries and presentation spaces, and the way we engage the world in humankind's greatest story: flight. The Museum will remain open throughout the project, with phased closures and openings of our galleries, as well as our shops, theaters, and cafe.
The National Mall building needs our attention. Since opening in 1976, the ﬂagship location has welcomed more than 350 million people—that’s more than the population of the United States—which makes for some serious wear and tear, inside and out.
There will be significant renovation of the building's exterior and the underlying infrastructure, and all 23 galleries – some of which are original to the building – will be transformed. Portions of the Museum will be closed on a rolling basis, but there will always be areas open to visitors and artifacts on display.
We agree! And so do the millions of visitors who make the Museum one of the most popular in the world. The heart of the Museum will always be our unrivaled collection of aircraft and spacecraft, one-third of which are one of a kind or represent a major milestone. The reimagined Museum will still feature the artifacts you know and love, but our exhibitions need to be updated and modernized to help us inspire 21st century audiences.
By the time the transformation is complete, every artifact will have undergone conservation efforts. Iconic objects will return alongside many artifacts that have never been displayed. The new exhibit spaces will give visitors new ways to engage with history and trace its impact today and tomorrow.
Work is already underway. The seven-year project kicked off in December 2018, and will take place in two major phases.
While sections of the Museum will be closed for construction over the years, the Museum will remain open to the public, and our year-round programming for kids, educators, and aerospace enthusiasts will continue.
Every gift to the Museum brings us one step closer to our $250 million fundraising goal. Donate, become a member, or place your name on the Wall of Honor to be recognized among others who share a commitment to preserving aerospace history to educate and inspire the next generation.
We will be sharing stories, behind-the-scenes videos, and photos throughout the project. Follow us on social media, or get the latest news and schedules straight to your inbox by subscribing to our monthly newsletter.