Back in 2012, a dispute arose between the Renzo Piano-designed Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas and the adjacent Museum Tower, a 42-story residential building which was accused of reflecting so much glare through the museum's glass roof that it risked damaging the art inside, and made the museum's garden areas so warm they were unusable. Last week, that 3-year long dispute appears to have been brought to a close - with nothing happening, as the owners of the Museum Tower, the Dallas Police and Fire Pension System (DPFP), voted nearly unanimously that it is no longer their responsibility to find a solution.
"The board’s first priority is to protect the pension system that secures the financial futures of the city’s police officers and fire fighters," explained the DPFP in a statement received by the Dallas Morning News. "DPFP has spent more than two years in a good-faith effort to find a solution acceptable to all parties, but ultimately determined that all options under consideration were too costly to implement or would devalue the system’s investment."
The problem with the glare arose in June of 2012, shortly after the Museum Tower - which perhaps ironically is named for the Sculpture Center itself - had its glass facade constructed. Back then, it seemed like nothing would reconcile the two parties: a local lawyer, Tom Luce, agreed to act as mediator, but resigned a few months later after the two parties failed to agree on any of the proposed solutions. Those proposals ranged from pragmatic solutions to more outlandish ideas, such as REX's proposal for a 400-foot-tall freestanding dynamic shading system - a proposal that the Sculpture Center rejected on the grounds that it would overwhelm the museum. Now it seems like the problem will simply not be resolved at all, and the Nasher Sculpture Center will have to live with the internal blinds they installed to block the glare, and which unfortunately leave inadequate lighting conditions for the art.
For more on the decision, visit the Dallas Morning News' two reports from last week, or read their editorial on why "The search for a solution has to continue at Museum Tower."