Petersen Automotive Museum gets major donation

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The staff at LA’s major showcase for historic cars will have to find room for more. The Petersen Automotive Museum has announced a major gift that’ll add to its collection.

The gift is worth about $100 million. It includes the Wilshire Boulevard building that houses the museum, along with an additional car collection and un-restricted money.

The giver is Margie Petersen, the widow of museum namesake Robert Petersen. He built his fortune publishing magazines about almost anything on wheels – Hot Rod, Motor Trend and Dirt Rider, among others.

Along with his empire of specialized media properties, Petersen built the institution that’s displayed historic, custom and celebrity vehicles along LA’s Miracle Mile since 1994. He died almost four years ago.

Benefactor Margie Petersen says one goal of the new gift is to continue a program that offers 8,000 Los Angeles Unified school students free bus transportation to and from the museum every year.