Mexican millionaire builds controversial replica of mansion Thursday, 20 January 2022
SAN PEDRO GARZA GARCÍA, Mexico (AP) — A Mexican multi-millionaire is building a replica of his northern Mexico mansion to serve as a museum for his art collection, an endeavor criticized because it is funded in large part with public money.

Mauricio Fernández Garza, 71, said he wants to give the public access to his collections of art, historic artifacts and fossils. He estimates their value at $120 million.

But it’s where the items will be housed that is causing a stir. The plan, approved while Fernández Garza was mayor of this wealthy enclave next to Monterrey, faced opposition even then as a public project to hold personal items of the then mayor.

There are some 400 pieces, some of which are already being transported to the new space. The length of their exhibition has not been set, but once it is over the space would become a cultural center to host other collections and events, according to a town spokesperson.

The local government has said the cost of the project is $9.7 million, of which 60% of the funding will be public. Fernández Garza has said he will put up 20 million pesos, or $984,000. Other private donations will make up the difference.

The building is a copy of Fernández Garza’s mansion high in the mountains above San Pedro Garza García. He named it “La Milarca” after a character from medieval literature. The original mansion is being dismantled and part transported to the Rufino Tamayo Park in town to form the new La Milarca museum.

The park is in an exclusive area surrounded by malls, pricey apartments and homes.

Fernández Garza, the scion of one of the wealthiest and most influential families in the region, is casual and brusque in conversation. He is the grandson of Roberto Garza Sada, founder of Grupo Alfa, a conglomerate with interests in...

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