Exploratorium Gets City’s Blessing to Move

Children's museum plans to open larger space to attract more visitors


The Exploratorium has gotten the okay to move to the Embarcadero.

The three-years-in-the-making plan allows for the children's science museum to move onto piers 15 and 17, just across from Green Street on the Embarcadero, for 66 years— 50 of those essentially free on Pier 15 in exchange for doing all the necessary repairs to keep the pier from crumbling into the water. (They'll still be paying rent on Pier 17.)

By scoring a golden spot between the siren calls of Fishermen's Wharf and the Ferry Building, the Exploratorium expects to increase yearly attendance from 600,000 to 800,000, while snagging three times more space to boot.

The project has been slowly moving forward since 2004, and this week it was reviewed by both the Waterfront Design Advisory Committee and the Bay Conservation and Development Commission's Design Review Board.

And in that bigger space: outdoor exhibits, and a remake of the museum's Tactile Dome. ETA: 2012.

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