The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) has reopened the 84-year-old Weston Entrance to the public following a refurbishment. The revitalization of the museum’s Queen’s Park façade was designed by Toronto’s Siamak Hariri of Hariri Pontarini Architects.
The official reopening of the Weston entrance marks the first time in 10 years that visitors were able to enter the ROM through the historic entrance located adjacent to Toronto’s Museum subway station. Museum visitors were treated to free general admission on the date of the heritage entrance’s reopening on Dec. 12, 2017.
The newly-renovated entrance features a heated limestone stairway, which has been widened and extended to increase accessibility, with a new ramp for people using wheelchairs and strollers. The museum’s Michael Lee-Chin Crystal entrance on Bloor St. West is also accessible.
The renovation is part of the ROM’s Welcome Project, which also includes improvements to the Daphne Cockwell Indigenous Gallery and upcoming Helga and Mike Schmidt Performance Terrace. The ROM’s Welcome Project is an initiative that aims to give people greater access to the building and its exhibitions and galleries. The Welcome Project is being supported by a $1.5 million investment from the Government of Ontario, as well as investments from The W. Garfield Weston Foundation, the Ivey Foundation and the ROM Department of Museum Volunteers.
“This project opens up the ROM — both literally and symbolically — to our community, offering visitors better access to their Museum and builds on our commitment to create an exceptional visitor experience,” said Josh Basseches, director and CEO of the ROM, in a press release. “With more than 1.35 million visitors coming through the Museum’s doors last year, the opening of the Weston Entrance provides another way for us to welcome visitors from communities in Toronto, Canada and around the world, while simultaneously creating a welcoming gathering space that enhances our urban landscapes. We are very grateful to The W. Garfield Weston Foundation and the Government of Ontario for making this restoration work possible.”