Opening of kids’ museum is postponed

From a Times Staff Writer

A lack of funds prompted officials this week to delay until mid-2010 the opening of the Children’s Museum of Los Angeles, which is struggling to raise $26 million to build and install exhibits at its new home in Lake View Terrace.

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa announced Friday that he is joining with former Mayor Richard Riordan to recruit new directors for the museum’s 14-member board to begin a vigorous fundraising campaign.

Delays and rising costs of construction materials have boosted the overall price for the new facility at Hansen Dam by 46%, to $58.5 million.


Officials also revealed the results of a review of the museum’s business plan -- conducted by directors at the Skirball Cultural Center, Autry National Center, California Science Center and Children’s Discovery Museum of the Desert -- which found that the nonprofit faces challenges in persuading residents to visit the facility near the city’s edge.

“The right combination of forces, in the form of the mayors, and others, is coming together to help this project get to opening,” said Cecilia Aguilera Glassman, the museum’s chief executive for 14 months.