The project was launched in 1987, when Lillian Disney, widow of Walt Disney, donated $50 million. Gehry delivered completed designs in 1991. Construction of the underground parking garage began in 1992 and was completed in 1996. Construction of the concert hall itself stalled from 1994 to 1996 due to lack of fundraising. Upon completion in 2003, the project had cost an estimated $274 million.
After the construction, additional expenses were incurred to correct a flaw resulting from the design’s use of polished concave stainless steel surfaces. Residents of the neighboring condominiums suffered significant glare caused by sunlight that was reflected and concentrated in a manner similar to a parabolic mirror. The response was a computer analysis of the building’s structure; after the offending surfaces were identified, they were sanded to reduce glare in 2005.