Eye-catching new entrance planned for Palm Springs Air Museum

The entrance of the Palm Springs Air Museum will soon have a striking new redesign thanks to a $2.5 million project that will also renovate the classroom and restrooms.

Fred Bell, Board Vice-Chair and Managing Director explained, “We’ve doubled in size and there are so many annual visitors that the existing entrance no longer meets our needs.” 

The museum has experienced tremendous growth both in visitors and hangar space since it opened about 25 years ago. More than 100,000 people visit the museum annually, and it regularly tops the list of attractions in the Coachella Valley.

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The grand new entrance is fit for a museum with a growing prominence as it expands its collections of aircraft from WWII to the present day. The hangar space has grown from 40,000 square feet to 91,000 square feet.

Bell added, “The front end of our building, as you come in, was really designed for a facility that’s about half our size.” 

The museum wants to continue its work in educating students on the history of the aircraft, and the new renovation includes a 400-seat classroom that can also serve as a lecture hall and event space. 

The architecture and engineering company Harley Ellis Devereaux said drew ideas from the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor, an F-117 Nighthawk aircraft, The U.S. Air Force Academy Cadet Chapel, and even paper airplanes. Students of architecture may also notice the influence of Santiago Calatrava on the renderings.

Representatives from the museum estimate the renovation will be completed in about two years.

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