South KC Perspective
Wonderscope Museum Announces Design Team
By John Sharp
Wonderscope Children’s Museum of Kansas City has announced the design team for all new exhibits at its planned new facility at Red Bridge Shopping Center.
The design team will include Haizlip Studio, an award winning Memphis design firm that will take the lead on the project; the Paul Orselli Workshop (POW), a New York firm that assists museums with developing innovative exhibits; and MIG Portico, a Seattle based design firm that emphasizes connecting people with nature.
“Working with Wonderscope provides us the opportunity to help create their vision for a world-class children’s museum,” said Mary Haizlip, principal in charge of management, exhibit and design.
Roxane Hill, Wonderscope executive director, said her organization couldn’t be more excited to work with the selected firms. “Separately, their track record of success is proven throughout the world. Working together, we feel like we just got the children’s exhibit design dream team,” she said.
Wonderscope’s announcement noted its new facility will feature leading-edge exhibits housed in interactive spaces and a fluid floor plan. It will include outdoor exhibit space. The focus of the exhibits will continue to be on science, technology, engineering, art and math.
The design team will get input from focus groups of parents and children over the next couple of months prior to designing the exhibits, according to Brian Spano, Wonderscope Director of Communications. He stressed that all the exhibits will be brand new, and that no exhibits will be transferred to the new facility from the museum’s current location in Shawnee, Ks.
Current plans are to break ground for the new shared facility some time in 2018 with a targeted move-in date of mid-2019.
Wonderscope focuses on providing hands-on exhibits and programs for children 10 years old and younger that integrate art, literature, music and science. Unlike some attractions that don’t draw many repeat visitors, a 2017 survey of museum members that elicited over 400 responses showed that approximately half of them visited the museum monthly or more frequently.