The facility, called the Amazeum, will be built on land near the entrance to Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art on Northeast J Street in Bentonville.
Details of the project were announced Thursday afternoon.
“I am giddy with excitement,” Sam Dean said in a news release. Dean was recently named executive director of the museum and has nearly two decades experience in museum development and direction, most recently with the Exploratorium in San Francisco.
The 44,500-SF museum is expected to open in 2015. It will host interactive exhibits that will pay tribute to the land, industries and people that built Arkansas culture and sustain it today.
“We can’t believe the day is finally here and are looking forward to watching it all come together in the coming months,” Bob Arvin, the Amazeum’s board president, said in the release.
The Walton Foundation donated the land for the museum and also gave a matching grant of $10 million.
Other major commitments came from Lee and Linda Scott, The Hershey Company, General Mills, Nickelodeon, the Walmart Foundation. Lee Scott was CEO of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. from 2000 to 2009.
Fundraising efforts are ongoing, and Dean said details of a membership program would be announced in the coming months.