The Natural History Museum’s breathtaking building reflects the characteristic style of its architect, Alfred Waterhouse, but the process of coming up with the final design was a lengthy one. Waterhouse had to incorporate many competing ideas. This sketch of its layout is not one of Waterhouse’s own, but was drawn by Owen, who had particularly strong views on how the museum should look. This sketch bears a strong resemblance to the plan of the museum today.
Waterhouse also had to juggle with a stringent and ever-decreasing budget, which forced him to omit two proposed wings of the building. These wings have never been built, so his planned building remains incomplete.