On Wednesday, plans for the Frederic Church Center for Art and Landscape were presented to the public in a virtual informational meeting. Sean Sawyer, president of The Olana Partnership, explained that several sites had been considered, but a site near the entrance from Route 9G, next to the lake, had been chosen.
In the presentation, Sawyer reminded participants that, in the creation of Olana, Church started with heavily deforested land. The lake is artificial, and the landscape is Church's final work of art. The view from the proposed visitors' center will be this composed landscape, created by Church.
The project is anticipated to cost $11 million. In Round XI of the Regional Economic Development Council Initiative, the project received grants of $1,868,776 from NYSERDA (New York State Energy Research and Development Authority) and $1.4 million from the Empire State Development Market New York program. The remainder of the funding is coming from private donations and the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.
The project is currently going through the SEQR (State Environmental Quality Review) process, and, if all goes smoothly, construction is anticipated to begin in 2023. The opening of the Frederic Church Center for Art and Landscape is expected to happen in 2024.