Lucas Museum Board Picks Los Angeles Over San Francisco

LOS ANGELES (CBS SF) — The Board of Directors for the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art decided on Tuesday to build its facility at a Los Angeles site, despite the entreaties of San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee and other Bay Area politicians to build it on Treasure Island.

The Museum Twitter account made the announcement Tuesday afternoon when it released it’s final statement on the decision.

“After extensive due diligence and deliberation, the Board of Directors for the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art is pleased to announce plans to build the museum in Exposition Park in Los Angeles,” the statement read.

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The statement went on to speak of the board being “humbled by the overwhelmingly positive support” that both San Francisco and Los Angeles offered during the selection process, saying that the decision on the museum location “proved to be an extremely difficult decision precisely because of the desirability of both sites and cities.”

“While each location offers many unique and wonderful attributes, South Los Angeles’s Promise Zone best positions the museum to have the greatest impact on the broader community, fulfilling our goal of inspiring, engaging and educating a broad and diverse visitorship,” the statement said.

The Lucas was offered seven acres of downtown land in South Los Angeles for a rental cost of just $20 a year compared to the $23 million San Francisco was asking for the Treasure Island site.

Mayor Lee tweeted out a message of disappointment shortly after the news went public, saying that he was “disappointed but so proud of the work #SF did” in the quest to bring the museum to San Francisco.

On Monday, Lee gathered people on Treasure Island to pose for a photo he used in a social media shout out to bring the billion-dollar facility to Treasure Island.

Lucas had already spurned San Francisco once when a proposal to have the museum built in the Presidio fell through in 2014, leading the ‘Star Wars’ creator and his wife Mellody Hobson to take the museum idea to Chicago.

Last year, opposition to the building of a Chicago lakefront museum by a parks advocacy group prompted the group to once again launch a new search for the facility, eventually settling on two final proposals from San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti released a statement that read, “Art exists to inspire, to move, to educate, and to excite. Thanks to George Lucas and Mellody Hobson, millions of Angelenos and visitors will enjoy an extraordinary collection anchored in storytelling — an art that carries so much meaning in the history and legacy of Los Angeles.”

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