By Staff writer
Senior officials give update as they welcome former French president Nicolas Sarkozy to construction site on Saadiyat Island
Construction of the Louvre Abu Dhabi is nearing completion and will soon enter a rigorous preparation phase prior to artwork installation and handover this year, it has been announced.
The update was revealed as former French president Nicolas Sarkozy, who signed the original agreement to build the museum in 2007, toured the construction site with Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, chairman of Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority and Ali Majed Al Mansoori, chairman of the UAE's Tourism Development and Investment Company (TDIC).
Sarkozy, who has close ties to the project since initiating its intergovernmental agreement in 2007, witnessed the museum’s completed dome’s ‘rain of light’ effect, as envisioned by Louvre Abu Dhabi’s architect Jean Nouvel, and the installation work of 30,000 square metres of natural stone paving.
In welcoming Sarkozy to the Louvre site, Al Mansoori said: “We are pleased to observe that the museum’s construction continues to be on track, and we expect to handover the building in mid-2016.”
Louvre Abu Dhabi’s construction was awarded to an Arabtec-led joint venture with Constructora San Jose SA and Oger Abu Dhabi in 2013.
When open, the museum’s permanent collection will be exhibited across 12 state-of-the-art galleries in dialogue with loaned artworks from 13 leading French institutions to tell a universal story of human history.
Galleries are designed like an Arabic ‘madinat’, or city, and visitors will also be able to enjoy temporary exhibitions in a dedicated space, a children’s museum, auditorium, cafe, restaurant, museum shop, research centre, promenades and gardens.