The first phase of the new ExpERIEnce Children’s Museum building is nearing its final stages of construction in downtown Erie, Pennsylvania. The old museum building which was originally built in 1906, stayed open for families to enjoy, throughout the construction phase. However, the old building will be closed for renovations by the time the new museum building opens in late June.
A renowned builder of museums and commercial exhibits, Building Four Fabrication is handling the construction at the ExpERIEnce Children’s Museum. Presently, the Atlanta-based developer is rounding up construction and assembling displays in the new building.
Featured amenities for the ExpERIEnce Children’s Museum project
The museum’s board members said the estimated cost of the entire ExpERIEnce Children’s Museum development is about $18 million. The project covers a new museum building and an outdoor classroom, as well as renovations of the existing museum building. Weber Murphy Fox designed the new 19,000-square-foot museum building located at the corner of French and East Fifth Streets.
Recently, the museum’s executive director, Ainslie Brosig gave a tour of the new ExpERIEnce Children’s Museum building. She pointed out that one of the building’s floors was dedicated to Lake Erie. Therefore, one of the star attractions on this floor is a climbing ship, which is also accessible to handicapped people. The ship was built complete with a giant captain’s wheel, inspired by the U.S. Brig Niagara.
Brosig also said the Weber Murphy Fox architectural firm’s design tries to anticipate every need for the ExpERIEnce Children’s Museum building. She said this attention to detail can be seen in the design of the climbing ship for instance. Especially since the structure was built with a cushioned floor around it to prevent injuries in case of a fall. The museum’s popular water table exhibit will also be replaced in the new building. The new display is 45 feet long and there are also dryers around it.
Once the renovations on the existing ExpERIEnce Children’s Museum building begin it will take a year to reach completion. Brosig said the building will consist of three classrooms, an art studio and an innovation station.