I have many fond memories of visiting the original museum downtown. I wanted to wander for hours without my parents finding me. It closed in 2000 to which I gave the benefit of doubt that something better would come along, yet after almost ten years after the start of it’s development it still hasn’t opened its doors yet.
The building itself has been completed, but the interior doesn’t include exhibits and the landscaping needs to be addressed. Or one would hope.
As you approach from the east, you are welcomed by a uninspiring monolith that will presumably protect our children from the oncoming zombie apocalypse(very prophetic). From another angle, it could be an Imperial Star Destroyer.
Construction might have halted because people forget that it was a museum and thought it was a warehouse. It’s a shame that a child’s first impression after being crammed on our freeways for hours that they’ll be shipping boxes for FedEx.
Even as you start to encircle it, you wonder if there’s any entrance as the streets have no sidewalks to help you. In fact, you have to enter the park quite a ways down and double back to find the south entrance. A little signage would help, but to be fair the museum
will never open hasn’t opened yet.
Inside the park, the building is tucked away awkwardly behind a corner. There’s plenty of parking, but there seems to be little connection with the museum itself. You have to find it among the trees, but there’s only a nondescript dirt path which I imagine is not wheelchair accessible. By the time you get your child there, you’ll probably be a grandparent.
The last I heard, the museum is slated to open in 2015, but will it ever really matter? A children’s museum must inspire imagination, not a day at the office park. I’ll save my final judgement for once it opens, but until then our kids have their own bridge to nowhere.