Museum of Fine Arts, Houston – Case Study


The campus of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (MFAH) has been transformed with a new conservation center art school, and contemporary art building. These new additions make the final link to the MFAH campus connecting them to the Caroline Wiess Law Building, one of the original art buildings that was built in 1924. The entire expansion project began in 2012 and was completed with the opening of the Nancy and Rich Kinder Building on November 21, 2020.

Encompassing 14 acres in the heart of Houston’s Museum District, the MFAH campus-redevelopment project is a major contribution to the city’s efforts in improving the pedestrian experience. With an array of public plazas, reflecting pools, gardens, sidewalks, street lighting, and wayfinding, the Susan and Fayez S. Sarofim Campus provides an active setting for these three significant new structures. The new Nancy and Rich Kinder Building has 15 galleries, a 215-seat theater, two conference rooms, additional underground parking, and two destination food venues. This building increases overall MFAH exhibition space by nearly 75 percent.



The first phase of the campus expansion, Glassell School of Art, project management was crucial in keeping the overall program budget and schedule with approved limits. When Hurricane Harvey hit Texas in the summer of 2017, this first phase was not complete, and the hurricane caused unprecedented levels of flooding. Legends Project Development (LPD) worked with the client and construction manager to mitigate impacts through creative adjustments to budgeting, scheduling, and access to builder risks policies.

In addition to the original scope of the Nancy and Kinder Building, multiple major art commissions had to be integrated into the building’s infrastructure or constructed on site while the building was being completed during the last year of construction. Also, the project’s last eight months of completion had to be managed under the challenges of a pandemic. LPD led the project team through these extraordinary circumstances by successfully integrating all the various unique components into the new building and completing the final phase of the MFAH campus expansion.

See also: LPD_Case_Study