Officials seek new home for CVG's historic murals

HEBRON, KY (FOX19) - Some massive murals at the Cincinnati Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) need a new home.

They've been at the airport for about 40 years, and they're no longer in some plans for renovations.

In the 1970s, 14 murals were on the chopping block at Union Terminal as part of plans to demolish the concourse that housed those pieces.  Back then, a group called "Save the Terminal Committee" raised the money to move them to their new home at CVG.

Fast forward about 40 years later, and you'll see their future is in question again.

"We have been a good custodian of them and took good care of them for the last 40 years.  Now we'll try to find a new home for them for the next 40-plus years," said airport CEO, Candace McGraw.

Of those 14 mosaic pieces by artist Winold Reiss, 9 of them are in terminals 1 and 2 that are closed and set to be torn down.  Those 9 murals are not in the airport's plans for the future.

"The terminals 1 and 2 facilities is part of our master plan that was completed in December, would be demolished.  Ultimately, on that site, we're looking for a consolidated rental car facility," added McGraw.

If you stand next to one of the murals, you'll see they aren't the smallest things in the world.  In fact, each of them is 20x20 feet, and weigh several tons.

"Each weigh about 8 tons.  So they are massive pieces of artwork.  So, it's a little bit of a challenge to find the right home," McGraw told FOX19.

These works depict the rich history of Cincinnati through workers in some of the city's most booming industries at the time.  For that reason, one Cincinnati man hopes they do find a new home.

"They depict Cincinnati's history in such an artful way, and it would be ashamed to either have them destroyed or scattered across the city," said Jake Warren.

Airport leaders say it's not official that these pieces would be demolished, but they are working with the city to figure out a plan.

One of Mayor Mark Mallory's aides told FOX19 that the mayor estimates the cost to move these pieces to a new home between $5 million and $7 million, and the city isn't planning to pay for it.

Mallory has launched a campaign on his website for the public's ideas, as well as financial contributions to help move the pieces:

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