NCCHR Begins Construction on 24,000-square-foot Expansion for Enhanced Visitor Experience and Programs

Museum to operate through 2024 and close for roughly seven months in 2025. 

ATLANTA (March 11, 2024) – The National Center for Civil and Human Rights (NCCHR) has begun construction to expand its iconic downtown Atlanta building. The project will add two new wings – totaling approximately 24,000 square feet – for classrooms, exhibits, and event spaces while refreshing the museum’s current offerings.  

The museum will remain open through 2024. It will temporarily close between January and August 2025, reopening with its new wings in the Fall.  

Protective fencing has been installed around the museum’s perimeter and adjoining property for the project’s duration. Fencing extends east to the corner of Ivan Allen Jr. Blvd. and Centennial Olympic Park Drive NW. It reaches south in Pemberton Place, beside the World of Coca-Cola. 

  •  The museum’s Pemberton Place and Ivan Allen Jr. Blvd. entrances are accessible. As a safety measure, the primary visitor entry point will be the Pemberton Place entrance. Visitors requiring ADA accessibility may also use the Ivan Allen Jr. Blvd. entrance. 
  • Visitor parking at the nearby Coca-Cola parking deck on Ivan Allen Jr. Blvd. remains available throughout construction.
  • Any changes to hours or days of operation due to construction will be posted on NCCHR’s website –  

“We are excited to begin our next chapter as we celebrate our tenth anniversary. Our expansion fulfills our founders’ original vision to establish a national cultural organization dedicated to inspiring the changemaker in each of us to protect rights,” said Jill Savitt, NCCHR’s president and CEO. 

During its temporary closure in 2025, NCCHR will host frequent community events across metro Atlanta, including NCCHR’s Truth programs, which will bring history to life and address contemporary rights issues at local coffee shops, restaurants, and event and performance venues. While the museum is closed, NCCHR will continue administering its ongoing programs: K-12 education, the LGBTQ+ Institute, DEI training experiences, human rights training for law enforcement, and the Truth & Transformation Initiative.   

NCCHR’s Fulfilling the Vision capital campaign has raised more than $52 million towards its goal of $56 million. This Spring, NCCHR will launch an additional community-focused fundraising campaign to generate broad participation in the expansion project. 

The upcoming expansion will feature a three-story West Wing with a café and three new galleries: 

  •  A Family Gallery on the lobby level for children under 12 will feature immersive, hands-on experiences to inspire interest in rights and justice for a new generation.  
  • A gallery that tells the history of the Reconstruction Era and its legacy, with artifacts from the Without Sanctuary collection.  
  • A Special Exhibitions Gallery for traveling and rotating exhibitions.  

A one-story East Wing will provide flexible meeting space for classrooms, performances, trainings, and events. The East Wing’s roof will accommodate a new ticketing experience and outdoor event space.   

Enhancements to the current building will include:  

  • A reimagined gallery that displays selected artifacts from the Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. Collection. 
  • A new Activation Lab for visitors to reflect on how to tap their power to protect rights and make positive changes in their communities.   
  • Expansion of popular installations such as the lunch counter sit-in experience. 
  • Updates to the permanent civil and human rights exhibits.  

NCCHR’s exhibit curators are Ejim Dike and Liba Beyer. Dike, former US Human Rights Network executive director, is focusing on the museum’s new gallery on Reconstruction and refreshing its permanent civil rights exhibits and King Collection gallery. Beyer, a global human rights advocate who spent 20 years at Human Rights Watch, is curating the new Family Gallery and updating the permanent human rights gallery. 

Atlanta real estate advisory firm DaVinci Development Collaborative serves as the development manager for the expansion. “As members of our team participated in the original initiative in 2014, we are deeply privileged to work with this current dedicated group on this important project,” said David Scott, senior principal and project executive for DaVinci Development. 

“NCCHR’s work and vision are critical to enriching and advancing society,” said Malcolm Davis, project manager at Perkins&Will, the architecture firm designing the new wings. “We are honored to be the design partner for this expansion.” 

NCCHR’s design and construction partners are: 

  • Atelier Brueckner – a global design firm based in Stuttgart, Germany, oversees exhibition design. 
  • DaVinci Development Collaborative LLC – an Atlanta-based boutique firm is the overall project developer manager.   
  • Juneau Construction Company – based in Atlanta, the woman-owned company directs building construction.  
  • Perkins&Will – the national firm headquartered in Chicago, oversees design of the expanded building and campus.   
  • Solomon Group – the New Orleans-based national experiential production company leads exhibit fabrication.  


About the National Center for Civil and Human Rights 

NCCHR is a museum and cultural organization that inspires the changemaker in each of us. Founded in 2014, NCCHR connects the US civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s to global human rights movements for people of color, women, immigrants, people with disabilities, LGBTQ+ people, and more. Our immersive and empathy-building experiences highlight people who have worked to protect rights and model how individuals create positive change. For more information, visit our website at Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, @ctr4chr, and LinkedIn at 



James Richards, Communications Director | [email protected], 646-789-1375