Public museums in Illinois will share $15 million in state money for facility improvements and new exhibits.
Gov. Pat Quinn announced the funding on Thursday. His office says it will create more than 370 jobs.
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The money comes from the Illinois Public Museum Capital Grants Program. The Illinois Department of Natural Resources manages the program. About 50 museums, parks, gardens and zoos will receive funding.
Several suburban venues received funding. The Arlington Heights Historical Museum received $43,800 for signage improvements. The Elmhurst Art Museum received $270,000 for infrastructure improvements. The Grayslake Heritage Center & Museum received $154,059 to help fund improvements to the annex. The Itasca Historical Depot Museum received $110,000 to help fund the relocation and restoration of a train caboose and an interactive train display.
The Lombard Historical Society received $45,000 for a carriage house expansion project. Geneva's Peck Farm received $95,000 for property improvements. The Raupp Museum in Buffalo Grove received $149,250 to fund the creation of three new exhibits. The Spring Valley Nature Center & Heritage Farm in Schaumburg received $115,000 for three new natural history exhibits. The Kane County Forest Preserve District received $150,000 to fund a new exhibit at the Tekawitha Woods at Creek Bend Nature Center.
Other major institutions receiving money include Chicago's Art Institute, Shedd Aquarium and Lincoln Park Zoo. Washington Park Botanical Garden in Springfield, the Rockford Art Museum, Quincy Art Center and the Peoria Zoo.
This year's $15 million follows $15 million given to institutions in 2010.