MOA’s Partnership for the Peoples Renewal project (MRP) was a multi-year major expansion and renovation project, undertaken to enhance physical, visual and virtual access to MOA collections in order to better facilitate ongoing research. The project lasted from 2004-2010, and cost approximately $55.5 million. It was funded in large part by a Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) grant. Additional funds came from provincial (British Columbia) grants, a Museums Assistance Program (MAP), and the University of British Columbia. Prior to the launch of the MRP, MOA’s thirty year old infrastructure was no longer able to successfully serve the increasing demands of its communities and users due to insufficient space to safely store or display material, to acquire new acquisitions, or to conduct research
Renovations included a new research wing, new offices, laboratories, a culturally sensitive research room, recording studio, and a new exhibition hall (The Audain Gallery). Other enhancements included MOA's new Multiversity Galleries, the creation of the Reciprocal Research Network (RRN), expansion of the Museum Shop, a new cafe, and courtyard and outdoor events area.
The work of the MRP was carried out by different streams: Program Wide stream, Building stream, Collections Research and Enhancement Project (CREP), the Reciprocal Research Network (RRN), and the Laboratory of Archaeology stream. Records in the fonds are divided into series based on these streams.
The MRP had physical and virtual components. The physical components included:
• Expanding the building (from approx.. 50,000 square feet to 120,000 square feet)
• Creation of spaces suitable for interdisciplinary and collaborative community-based research
• New 5,600 square foot exhibition space
• A redesign and expansion of visible storage into the “Multiversity Galleries”
• Expanded capacity for direct object study through the creation of research suites
• New large object storage rooms for textiles, works on paper, and three dimensional works
• New offices for staff
• New chemistry lab
• New library and archives space
• Installation of a Museum cafe
• Expansion and relocation of the Museum Shop
Virtual components included:
• Development of the Reciprocal Research Network (RRN)
• The digitization of MOA’s object collection, and development of an online catalogue to make these images and object information accessible.
• Consultations with originating communities regarding the handling and description of MOA’s object collection
Major roles in the MRP included:
• Jill Baird (MAO staff) – Project Lead,
• UBC Properties Trust (especially Joe Redmond and Rob Brown) – The University’s development arm given responsibility to build all UBC buildings. Involved in review and approval of design and budget, including UBC Board approvals
• Lundholm Associate Architects (Michael Lundholm, Lead) – Museum architect and planning specialist. Worked on initial plans with MOA in early phase, and did the feasibility study.
• Stantec Architecture Limited (Noel Best, lead) – The architectural firm that designed the building and interior spaces renovations and additions, in consultation with Arthur Erickson (architect of the original building)
• David Cunningham – Lead project designer
• Ambit Consulting (Dan Zollmann) – Provided program management consultation for non-building components of MRP
• Goppion - Italian company that made the new cases that went in the Multiversity Galleries