First glimpse of contemporary art museum coming to Fishtown

Blueprints show a new tower rising on an empty lot next to existing warehouse buildings. Plans show retail, an outdoor cafe, and a bar or restaurant space.

A 2017 photo of a West Collection opening (Provided)

A 2017 photo of a West Collection opening (Provided)

This article originally appeared on PlanPhilly.

Documents obtained from the city’s Department of Licenses and Inspection show the first glimpse of the West Collection’s planned home in Philadelphia’s Fishtown neighborhood.

PlanPhilly reported last week that the 3,100-piece art collection, assembled by billionaire SEI Investments CEO Alfred P. West and daughter Angela Paige West, was headed to a permanent address near Frankford and Girard avenues.

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Construction permits describe the construction of a five-story tower that would rise above the current low-slung warehouse buildings. But blueprints filed along with a project application show that the new tower would protrude just one floor above the current roofline, rising on what is now an empty lot adjacent to an existing structure.

The plans also outline the construction of four retail spaces, an outdoor cafe and a bar or restaurant space, all carved out of the existing warehouse. A new walkway and patio will serve as an entrance into the bar or restaurant space. The plan earned praise from Ian Wilson, zoning chair for the Fishtown Neighbors Association.

“This project would be a great addition to the Frankford corridor and artistic identity of Fishtown,” he said.

Blueprints filed with the Department of Licenses and Inspection for the West Collection’s new home on Frankford Avenue. (Provided)

The plans, from Ruggiero Plante Land Design are dated September 2017 — an indication that the relocation of the collection has been in the works for years.

A spokesman for the West Collection previously declined to comment on the proposal.

Minimalist Donald Judd, visual artist Julian Opie and Brazilian artist and photographer Vik Muniz are among the artists whose works are held by the West Collection.

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