Bloomberg News

Helsinki Guggenheim Museum Bid Gains Approval of Mayor

April 17, 2012

(Corrects to show foundation’s cost is included in the spending in second paragraph of story published April 16.)

The Guggenheim Foundation project to establish a fourth European museum in Helsinki gained the approval of the city’s mayor.

Jussi Pajunen proposed the city council approve the plan to establish a Guggenheim museum in the Finnish capital, according to e-mailed documents by the City of Helsinki. The city should this year set aside 2.8 million euros ($3.7 million) to pay for the museum’s license and other costs, including 500,000 euros to establish a foundation to run the museum, the proposal said.

Helsinki backs the plan to set up the gallery to increase tourism and strengthen its image as a design and technology hub. The 140 million-euro museum would mostly be a non-collecting institution hosting traveling exhibitions of contemporary art, with attendance estimated at about half a million people.

The Guggenheim Bilbao museum in Spain, designed by Frank Gehry, has attracted more than 10 million visitors since it was first opened in 1997. The Bilbao museum will have right of approval of the Helsinki museum. The foundation also operates museums in New York, Berlin, Venice and Abu Dhabi.

Helsinki’s City Council is scheduled to decide on the construction of the museum in the autumn of 2013, the mayor’s proposal showed.

To contact the reporter on this story: Kati Pohjanpalo in Helsinki at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Tasneem Brogger at

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