Lake Powell Chronicles | Powell Museum renovation moving forward

Glen Canyon Conservancy announced last week that renovation of the John Wesley Powell Memorial Museum in Page is finally moving forward after the GCC board of directors voted to accept a bid and contract from Flagstaff-based Loven Contracting.

“The scope of repairs and updates on the building is comprehensive: flooring, lighting, insulation, climate control and more will receive overhauls to get the Powell Museum in shape for another 50 years of serving visitors and our community,” said a statement released by GCC Executive Director Martin Stamat.

The museum is slated to reopen in 2023. The renovation work is expected to start in the fall and last for three to four months. During that time, GCC’s flagship store at 12 N. Lake Powell will remain open.

“Once completed, the two buildings will have a fresh face and updated systems to provide more opportunities for exhibits and learning,” the statement said. “There will be improved interior and exterior spaces for public engagement, as well.”

The Powell Museum was forced to close after an extensive black-water flood in June 2019. Fortunately, none of the collections were damaged thanks to quick action from GCC staff. Exhibits and collection items were moved off site to safeguard them from water, chemicals and mold. The building then received water mitigation and extensive asbestos abatement.

“Our funding levels waxed and waned for several years through severe challenges like extended government shutdowns, COVID-19 closures, and the tragic passing of our good friend, Jim Arnold of Lake Powell Construction, who was set to be the general contractor for the project in 2021,” the statement from Stamat said.

“GCC’s incredible team has worked for years through insurance claims, complex federal programs, economic upheaval and extended government shutdowns to get the Powell Museum open to the public once again.”

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