Science Central is excited to announce that the museum’s Demonstration Theater underwent a major remodel that makes it more accessible to everyone. This project was made possible thanks to support from AWS Foundation and the American Electric Power Foundation, on behalf of Indiana Michigan Power. Mosaic Building Solutions carried out the remodel, working off designs by Bona Vita Architecture.
This project enhanced the Demonstration Theater’s physical structure and supporting technology enhanced. Of those enhancements, a section of moveable, bleacher-style seats were installed in the theater’s front row. For individuals in wheelchairs, these seats push back, creating space for those individuals to sit in alignment with the rest of the front row, which was not possible before.
Additional changes to the seating area include the installation of steps on one side of the theater, plus the installation of safety handrails on both sides of the space. These modifications will help visitors who need extra stabilization while climbing stairs and make the upper rows of seats accessible to those who cannot climb the current seat-stairs. Also, portable seatbacks will be available for visitors’ use, providing back support to those who need it.
On the technology side, the theater’s microphone and speaker system were redesigned. Acoustic tiles were added to the ceiling, which will help keep the presenter’s voice focused within the space. Also, Bluetooth attachments that can be used with modern hearing aids became available for visitors’ use, amplifying the presenter’s voice for them. Lastly, a talk-to-text system was installed that will have the capability of providing live captions during presentations.
Science Central held a groundbreaking ceremony for this project on Thursday, Nov. 18, at 10:30 a.m. This event was open to media, as well as the general public.
Speakers at the ceremony included Science Central’s executive director, Martin Fisher; Dr. Andrea Geyer, vice chair of Science Central’s Board of Directors; Tom Didier, 3rd District representative on the Fort Wayne City Council; Katie Davis, vice president of external affairs and customer experience for Indiana Michigan Power; and Patti Hays, chief executive officer of AWS Foundation.