The Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden has announced the selection of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and Selldorf Architects to jointly develop a modernization plan for the Museum’s interior and plaza. After nearly a half-century, the Hirshhorn will upgrade galleries and public spaces to respond to the requirements of a public museum of modern and contemporary art and dramatic increases in attendance since 2017.In addition to the changing needs and expansion of exhibition space, SOM | Selldorf will address aging infrastructure, including fine art storage, vertical transportation and storm water management. The federal contract was awarded following a competitive process by Smithsonian Facilities in consultation with the Hirshhorn. SOM | Selldorf will submit a visioning document in 2023 in anticipation of their concept design, which will be subject to a public consultation process. The Hirshhorn was designed by SOM under the direction of Gordon Bunshaft.The appointment of SOM | Selldorf marks the onset of the final chapter of successive projects—the largest campus revitalization in Hirshhorn’s history. The three-phase upgrade began with the building façade repair and continues with the Hiroshi Sugimoto-led redesign of the Sculpture Garden. While some interventions will require spaces to close temporarily during construction, the Hirshhorn will program throughout.The first project, expected to be complete by the end of this year, replaces the museum roof and pre-cast panels in-kind to improve thermal performance and provide new structural attachments. A second project, the revitalization of the Hirshhorn’s Sculpture Garden by artist-architect Hiroshi Sugimoto, will begin in spring 2023. Sugimoto leads his design team of New Material Research Laboratory Co. Ltd. in Tokyo, in association with Yun Architecture; Quinn Evans Architects, architect of record; and Rhodeside & Harwell Inc., landscape architect.The Sculpture Garden’s redesign will expand the Hirshhorn’s “front door” on the National Mall to increase visitation by 300% and introduce three distinct showcases for modern sculpture, time-based and performance art, and large-scale commissions. Sugimoto’s plan also reopens the underground passage designed by Bunshaft to reconnect the National Mall through the Sculpture Garden with the Hirshhorn Museum and plaza. A groundbreaking ceremony Nov. 16 will signal the start of this project.The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden is the national museum of modern and contemporary art and a leading voice for 21st-century art and culture.