Billionaire David Koch Plans Pretty Fountains For The Met
The overall sprucing up of the exterior will include updating the museum's exterior lighting and the entire plaza as well as renovating the dormant oval fountains. Koch was inspired by the Lincoln Center's Revson fountain with its dramatic dancing display. That fountain was created by fountain architect Mark Fuller of WET Design. WET is best known for the fountains at the Bellagio hotel in Las Vegas. (The New Yorker had a fascinating piece on the details of the Lincoln Center Fountain back in January).
Koch knows a little something about the Lincoln Center. In 2008 he agreed to contribute $100 million toward the renovation of the New York State Theater. The gift put Koch's name on the door (it's now known as the David H. Koch Theater) and was the largest private capital donation in the Lincoln Center's history. He is the executive vice president of Koch Industries, Inc. and has an estimated net worth of $17.5 billion.
Koch's is the first major gift dedicated to the Met's exterior renovations. The fountains were installed in the early 1970s, a gift from Lila Acheson Wallace, a co-founder of Reader's Digest. The Wall Street Journal also points out that the fountains are designated landmarks and any changes must be approved by the Landmarks Preservation Commission.