LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is gearing up to tear down its current campus to make way for a new museum.

Construction crews were spotted at the museum earlier this week.

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(credit: Ken Wolter/shutterstock)

Los Angeles County awarded LACMA nearly $200 million for its new project intended to remove any potentially hazardous materials and make way for the new structure.

The new building is being designed by Swiss architect Pete Zumthor and is expected to cost at least $650 million, which includes parking and other infrastructure costs that may not be included in that square footage calculation.

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Brad Pitt and Diane Keaton both endorsed the project and were on hand for a Board of Supervisors meeting, where they praised architect Peter Zumthor’s single-story design. The structure will be built across and above Wilshire Boulevard using the bond financing matched by $525 million in private money raised by the museum.

Zumthor, said Pitt, is “one of the great architects of our time … (who) builds from the soul, for the soul”.

“There’s no way to understand his work from a computer-generated image,” said Pitt. “You really have to stand in them to see his mastery of light and shadow.”

Keaton used the prestigious Oscars to illustrate Zumthor’s renown in the architectural community.

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“This architect, Mr. Zumthor, has been honored with 16 awards,” said Keaton. “So if you were an actor, that means you would have won 14 Academy Awards, which is never going to happen. So I think we’re sitting pretty.”