Exploratorium sets date for big move

After 43 years at their iconic Palace of Fine Arts home, San Francisco’s Exploratorium has announced they will throw open the doors at their new home on Pier 15 on the Embarcadero next April 17.

Their new $300 million ultra-green building will be filled to the brim with new interactive hands-on exhibits the Exploratorium is famously known for. Nearly $250 million has already been raised, and construction is 90 percent complete.

The Exploratorium will stay put at its current home until Jan. 2 before beginning the transformation to their new space. Once it’s opened, the new location will triple their available space indoors and out. It will also feature large bay windows to showcase their waterfront location, a rooftop terrace, and 1-1/2 acres of public outdoor space.

Since 1969, the Exploratorium has exposed generations of curious kids to the wonders of science and technology. Barely anyone who grew up in the Bay Area hasn’t jumped around in the Shadow Box or bumbled through the pitch-black Tactile Dome.

The museum is looking to increase its appeal to grown-ups with its more-central Embarcadero address. Bumped-up programs for adults like Exploratorium After Dark, art and cinema exhibits, and visiting speakers and artists are expected to attract a slightly older set.

Exploratorium Executive Director Dennis M. Bartels said in a statement:

“The scale of our new home on Pier 15 will not only allow us to welcome a magnitude of new visitors, but also broaden our impact around the world by developing new experiences that make science accessible to all.”

The Exploratorium also announced this week that Craig Silverstein and Anthony F. Earley Jr. would be joining their Board of Directors. Silverstein is most famously known for being Google’s first hire and their previous director of Technology at Google. Earley is the Chairman, CEO, and President of PG&E Corporation.

The Exploratorium plans special programming and activities for their opening day next April 17 from 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.