Opening Celebration Weekend



The Penn Museum is a museum of everyone and for everyone. We are Building Transformation by reimagining not just our galleries and spaces, but also how our visitors experience them.

New amenities like passenger elevators, new restrooms, seating areas, and air-conditioning will create a new Museum experience—one that welcomes all visitors to explore and to experience the thrill of discovery for themselves.

New Ways to Explore

Two new passenger elevators will create vertical access throughout the Coxe (Egyptian) and Harrison Wings so that all guests can move easily among some of our most-visited spaces.

  • The new Harrison Wing Elevator will be conveniently located adjacent to the Main Entrance Hall. Visitors will be able to travel down to the Harrison Auditorium on the lower floor or up to the China and Japan Galleries on the upper floor. For the first time, all guests with wheelchairs and strollers will have direct access to the Auditorium from the Main Entrance Hall, and will also be able to move from the Auditorium to the upper floors at their convenience.
  • From the light-filled Gateway to Egypt off of the Main Entrance Hall, the new Coxe (Egyptian) Wing Elevator will link the Egypt (Sphinx) Gallery and Egypt (Mummies) Gallery on the upper floor, transporting visitors through the wonders of ancient Egypt and Nubia. (*Please note that while the Egypt (Sphinx) Gallery is now closed for conservation of monumental artifacts, the Egypt (Mummies) Gallery remains open.)

New Galleries to Discover

Our new galleries are being designed with all visitors in mind. A focus on accessibility in every sense of the word—going above and beyond ADA compliance—will create a more comfortable, more engaging gallery experience.

  • By adding air-conditioning to more than 30,000 square feet of galleries and public spaces, we will create a comfortable space year-round.
  • New lighting will showcase objects in all their vibrant and intricate detail.
  • Interactive elements and touchable objects positioned at standard heights will invite all visitors to delve deeper into the context of the objects on display.
  • Seating areas will provide places for conversation and reflection.

New Experiences to Join

After more than a century of welcoming visitors from the Philadelphia and Penn communities, the Harrison Auditorium is being renovated to become more accessible to all.

  • The renovated Auditorium will have newly refurbished seats, wider aisles and new aisle lighting, improved audio/visual systems, and a greater number of dedicated spaces for wheelchairs.
  • The Harrison restrooms are being leveled so that they are fully accessible, and we are adding changing tables for families.
  • The renovated Auditorium lobby will include a seating area where guests can gather, a new coatroom, and access to the new Harrison Wing elevator.