City moves ahead with museum plans
By Ty Johnson
Published in News on January 25, 2012 1:46 PM
City officials have put up a sign indicating the former Arts Council building's future use while a citizen committee has begun meetings to discuss how the museum will be laid out.
As the Air Force Museum Citizen Committee prepared for its second ever meeting, member Martha Bryan turned to Assistant City Manager Tasha Logan and complimented the city's recent addition to its newest building acquisition at 2406 E. Ash St.: a banner announcing the former Arts Council of Wayne County building as the "Future Home of the Air Force Museum."
"It makes it look like it's going to happen," Mrs. Bryan said.
Ms. Logan replied optimistically.
"We're going to try," she said.
Ms. Logan said following the meeting that the hanging of the banner did not mean that the building's path toward becoming an Air Force museum was definite, but suggested that was the only option the Goldsboro City Council had identified the building for.
"That's the only purpose they've discussed for the building. If, for some reason, the plan can't meet the objectives," she said, noting the council's insistence that there be an educational component to the museum, "the council would decide if their feelings on the building have changed."
Leading up to and following the July 5, 2011, vote to purchase the building, council members began using rhetoric suggesting that if a museum was not possible, the city could look to sell the building and get its money back.
Ms. Logan also seemed to have shifted the Air Force Museum Citizen Committee's purpose from two weeks prior when asked if the objective of the committee was to explore the feasibility of using the building as a museum, explaining that the charge of the group was to see how the building would work as a museum through looking at how exhibits could be laid out among other details.
In the minutes from the Jan. 10 meeting, Ms. Logan explains that the purpose of the group is to "collect information from the community for the determination of the best use of space of the building which was purchase (sic) by the city with the intent for use as an Air Force museum."
The committee's agenda item that carried the most weight addressed the information gathering charge as the committee approved its request for proposals to be distributed to consultants.
Ms. Logan explained that the hope was for consultants to put together a public input gathering system to create a master plan. She added that many consultant firms would also have architectural skills, meaning future steps, if their plans were selected and implemented, could be accomplished without changing contractors.
The request for proposal asks for cost estimates for converting the building to an Air Force museum as well as images to serve as tools to inspire donors for the project.
The RFP says that in the case of the design images, the committee is "not looking for detailed architectural drawings" as much as "attractive rendered images of both the exterior and interior of the building that will demonstrate its potential use of space for exhibits and educational activities."
The process, identified in the committee's first meeting, will involve city staff members selecting from the original pool of proposals three plans for the committee to interview in late February to prepare a recommendation for the Goldsboro City Council to vote on March 5.
The meeting began with a discussion of the building's banner and other ways the group wanted to publicize its efforts in a revisit of an item discussed at the committee's first meeting Jan. 10. Ms. Logan said the city would continue to work at providing information cards for members with speaking points to help inform the public at planned speaking arrangements and just around town, though she said the city was still working at acquiring a printer for the job. She also said the city was working to make space for the committee to place its documents on the city website.
Having approved the request for proposals, Ms. Logan suggested the group wouldn't need to meet until staff had selected its three options for the project. The next meeting of the citizen committee will be Feb. 21 where the members will interview consultants.