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Chicago’s 400 Million Dollar Gift

This summer George Lucas, the “Star Wars” creator, announced his plan to build a first-of-its-kind interactive museum of artwork and movie memorabilia, The Lucas Museum of Narrative Art, in Chicago. Leaving the city to wonder what Lucas had planned for the its lakefront. Inquiries ended Monday when Ma Yansong, the principal designer of the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art, unveiled the museum’s first conceptual drawings as what he called “a new type of architecture” for the world. Lucas has planned to fully fund the $400 million dollar project as a gift to the city of Chicago, taking care of everything including landscaping, and construction costs.

The flowing, white, sculptural building is planned to be built between Solider Field and McCormick Place, between Lake Shore Drive and before Burnham Harbor Drives. The building is planned to feature a crowned observation deck designed to appear as if it were hovering slightly above the building. There patrons will be able to see everything from Chicago’s iconic skyline to the crisp blue of Lake Michigan.


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The inside the seven-story structure Ma has planned a “very large dome” that is able to function as a concert venue or multipurpose hall. Showcasing images for story telling, from comics and children’s books to digital art and film. The museum’s permanent collection will include works from Lucas‘ personal collection estimated to have a $600 million dollar worth, along with original props from “Star Wars.”

Not everyone is thrilled with the building’s futuristic concept. The design is bigger and taller than Chicago’s lakefront protectionists expected. The seven story building is expected to be taller than McCormick Place and just 40 feet shorter than the addition to Soldier Field. The architecture will be something Chicago is not used to but “Chicago has always been a leader in architectural design and innovation, and the mayor thinks the initial concept design continues that tradition,” said a statement issued by Emanuel’s office calling the museum a “generous gift that we only see once in a generation.”The museum is expected to open in 2018.

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