SHERIDAN — About 60 people gathered at the newly re-branded Brinton Museum Friday evening to hear plans for a forthcoming three-story museum on the campus of the Big Horn institution.
“I want this to be a community museum,” said director and chief curator Ken Schuster. “That’s very important: to make this institution a viable, powerful force in our state.”
The announcement of the new building follows a transfer of ownership of the museum completed earlier this year. Previously known as the Bradford Brinton Memorial and Museum and owned by a Chicago-based trust, The Brinton Museum recently changed hands to a local nonprofit foundation dedicated to its preservation.
The new museum will be built into the side of a hill and feature large gallery spaces and a public bistro among other features.
“It’s all about blending in (to its environment), but it’s also all about defining its own presence,” said architect Tim Belton.
The Brinton Museum is looking to raise an additional $5 million through private donors and foundations to build its endowment. About $16 million — $5 million more than is needed to cover construction costs — has already been donated or pledged.
Belton said construction is likely to begin within the next three months and will take around 14 months to complete.