WASHINGTON HEIGHTS — A beloved Uptown museum is slated to close for two years to allow for roof renovations and other gallery upgrades, sources said.
The Hispanic Society Museum and Library, at 613 W. 155th St., is partnering with Maria Romañach Architects to restore parts of the landmarked building, upgrade the infrastructure and improve accessibility for visitors.
Repairs to the museum — which was founded in 1904 and is considered the “premier collection of Hispanic arts and culture” in the U.S. — will cost $15 million and will run from January 2017 through the fall of 2019, the museum's website says.
The museum did not respond to requests for more information.
While the main building is closed, the museum will loan out parts of its collection for a traveling exhibit at the Prado Museum in Madrid from April through September, followed by a tour of North America into 2019. They will also continue to provide their free, educational programs — such as the concert series and education mission — off-site somewhere in the city. The library will also remain open by appointment.
Local Myra Alperson, who includes a tour of the site in her Noshwalks, said it would be a loss.
"The [Hispanic Society] is a real gem and it's an important part of my tour, because people don't expect anything as elegant and comprehensive," Alperson said. "I always take people to Audubon Terrace, describe its history — and the role of John James Audubon — and point out the statue of Don Quixote."
"One feels transported to another time and another place," she said.
The repairs are being funded by the New York City Council, the Office of the Manhattan Borough President, and the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.