The Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum Plaza gets a long-awaited repair

Oct 13, 2006

(Austin) You may have noticed the scaffolding and construction work going on at the Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum in recent months, but this isn't your typical building renovation. This initiative marks the beginning of a new era at the LBJ complex with the much-needed repair of the leaky LBJ Plaza, including the replacement of much of the Plaza by the Lady Bird Johnson Center.

This addition will transform the Plaza into an inviting setting for a wide range of programs, said Dr. Pat Clubb, Vice President for Employee and Campus Services. "It's a fitting tribute to the life and works of Lady Bird Johnson."

While the renovations and modifications to the existing buildings allow for much needed technological upgrades and expansion of the library and museum's programmatic capabilities, the addition of two classrooms opening onto the Lady Bird Johnson Center will provide a much needed assembly area for library visitors. The renovations will also address deterioration that has occurred since the LBJ was built in 1971. The building design was state-of-the art, but through the years the building developed problems with water leaks.

"We believe the addition will better serve the general public and dynamically connect the two great institutions the LBJ Library and the LBJ School of Public Affairs - that rise above it, said Betty Sue Flowers, Director of the LBJ Library and Museum. When the project is completed, the water problems that have plagued us for 30 years will be solved, and we will have an educational center and a beautiful outdoor area that will express the warm, welcoming spirit of Mrs. Johnson. The LBJ Library and Museum should have its new Lady Bird Johnson Center by late 2008.

In the interim, visiting the Library and Museum will be an adventure, said Flowers. Guests may have to walk through tunnels but the trip will be worthwhile. Permanent exhibits will remain, and a new exhibit called Power to the People: The Electrification of Rural Texas will be on display until May 28, 2007.

The $32 million renovation is funded by the Federal government and The University of Texas at Austin.