New USS Arizona Memorial Museum in works

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Hawaii Gov. Linda Lingle has released a $1 million grant-in-aid for the construction of a new USS Arizona Memorial Museum and Visitor Center.

The new facility will be built in phases to prevent the closure of the existing museum and center, which serves about 1.5 million visitors annually and is Hawaii’s most-visited attraction.

The current facility is being replaced because it is sinking and in a deteriorated condition.

The new center will house a museum with new and historically comprehensive galleries, open-air exhibits and interpretive displays; an outdoor amphitheater for educational activities; two movie theaters for education and visitor orientation; an expanded book shop; and improved visitor space and amenities.

Total project cost is about $52 million, including a previous state allotment of $1 million for planning, design and construction; $22.5 million in federal funds; and $27.5 million in private donations.

Construction is scheduled to begin in September 2008 and be completed in September 2010.

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