New Jersey Defunds Centre Pompidou’s Jersey City Museum, Saying Project Is ‘No Longer Viable’

The Centre Pompidou’s planned Jersey City museum was thrown into jeopardy on Saturday after New Jersey politicians pulled funding from the institution, saying that it was financially untenable.

The institution, one of several international satellites run by the Paris-based modern art museum, was first due to begin welcoming visitors in 2024 before its opening date was pushed back a couple years.

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Formally called the Centre Pompidou x Jersey City, the 58,000-square-foot museum would be the first Centre Pompidou satellite to open in North America. Others are already open in China and Belgium.

The total cost of the Centre Pompidou’s Jersey City institution has been a matter of debate, but one year ago, Republican politicians in the state began to suggest it could take more than $200 million to open it, with more than $50 million coming out of taxpayers’ pockets. Then, earlier this year, state entities began to raise concerns about the recurring costs of keeping the museum open.

On Saturday, the New Jersey Monitor reported that the state’s Economic Development Authority had formally written to the Centre Pompidou, saying that it would no longer fund the Jersey City museum, which chief executive officer Tim Sullivan declared defunct.

“While we are honored that Jersey City was selected as the first North American location for a Centre Pompidou facility, we have decided to pause this project indefinitely,” Sullivan wrote, in a letter obtained by the New Jersey Monitor. “Due to the ongoing impact of COVID and multiple global conflicts on the supply chain, rising costs, an irreconcilable operating gap, and the corresponding financial burdens it will create for New Jersey’s taxpayers, the Legislature has rescinded financial support, leaving us to determine that this project is unfortunately no longer feasible.”

Also on Saturday, the Jersey City Redevelopment Agency said it would no longer provide $18 million toward the museum. The agency called on the Centre Pompidou to return $6 million in state funding it had already received.

A Centre Pompidou spokesperson did not respond to request for comment.


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