The Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports and the National Insurance Institute (INS) have announced plans to create a new home for the Jade Museum, a popular San José tourist attraction.
The museum, which claims to be home to the best collection of pre-Columbian jade in the world, is now housed on the first floor of the INS building on the north side of Parque España, in the historic Barrio Amón. However, according to museum director Laura Rodríguez, only 1,355 pieces in the collection of 5,256 are on display because of a lack of space.
To resolve the problem, INS President Guillermo Constenla and Culture Minister María Elena Carballo plan to move the museum to Plaza de la Democracia, off Avenida 2 on the eastern edge of downtown San José, which the Culture Ministry, in conjunction with the Municipality of San José, is in the process of remodeling.
Officials say the plan will create a “corridor of museums” between the National Museum on the east side of the plaza and the Central Bank Museums beneath Plaza de la Cultura, a few blocks west. Though the INS board has approved the plan, it is still expected to be at least two years before the move takes place.
At present, INS is looking to buy a suitable site of at least 2,500 square meters on either the south or west side of Plaza de la Democracia. The institute is also charged with overseeing construction of the new building, which is expected to cost $6 million to $7 million, according to a statement from the Culture Ministry. The institute is negotiating with landowners. However, expropriation of the land remains an option.