Construction has begun for the new, highly anticipated state-of-art 6,500 square foot space called CREATE at Arizona Science Center. Set to open to the general public this fall, the multi-million dollar project is part of a 24,000 square foot renovation of the former Phoenix Museum of History, located in Heritage Park directly across from Arizona Science Center.
“CREATE at Arizona Science Center is dedicated to fostering a community of invention and creativity in Downtown Phoenix,” said Steven Weiner, Director of Programming. “By using high-tech tools such as 3D-printers and laser cutters, as well as low-tech tools like soldering irons and sewing machines, CREATE guests will learn new skills, bring their ideas to life, and work together to make a difference in our community.”
This space is specifically designed to serve children, teens, parents, educators and adults within the maker community. From beginners learning the basics, to classes and activities suitable for older children and teens with more advanced skills, CREATE will connect the principles of STEAM with learning-by-doing.
“Offering a space with these resources will foster collaboration on individual and community projects promoting science, technology and art; while working and experimenting on innovative ideas to encourage learning within our community,” said Chevy Humphrey, President and CEO of Arizona Science Center.
CREATE allows students and educators to experience hands-on creative problem-solving. With the support of local artists, engineers, makers and thinkers, CREATE will provide high-tech and low-tech tools and learning resources to K-12 teachers and students (including teen clubs) as well as to the general public.
CREATE will provides guidance to educators by connecting mathematics, design and engineering principles with their classrooms in a fun, engaging, and hands-on manner. It is a solution that is both consistent with Arizona Science Center’s mission to inspire, educate and engage curious minds through science and also addresses a critical need within the Arizona education community.
“Our globalized economy demands a workforce of problem-solvers, inventors, and entrepreneurs who are able to drive the innovations of our future. We are falling behind as a state in the global race for innovation and STEM education,” Humphrey said. “In order to make an impact and remain competitive, we need to get the community and our students excited about science and the idea of discovery. It is our goal, through this project, to plant a seed of curiosity in these students’ minds, one that they will nurture and grow both inside and outside of this space.“
The first phase of CREATE includes Challenge areas, Resource Centers and a collaborative space to spark conversation. Emphasis is placed on providing flexible areas where the community will imagine, design, make and connect.
CREATE Challenge areas are three open flexible spaces designed for a variety of hands-on activities. Each area will have unique challenges geared for specific age groups.
CREATE Resource Centers include three distinctive areas: the Wood Shop, the Artistry Hub, and the Electronics Zone. Guests can come with their own projects in mind and find the equipment and materials to work on them. In addition, CREATE staff and industry experts will lead workshops that provide in-depth instruction for varying levels of expertise.
CREATE will have an open area called Connect Commons where the community is encouraged to come together at extended tables, roll out the butcher paper provided and start cultivating ideas. Power stations and white boards will be located in this area for conceptualizing, research and tools.
A signature feature of CREATE is the Demonstration Stage. Guests will be able to experience making up close as artists, engineers and local makers create in real time and discuss their design-build process.
In preparation for the grand opening to the public, children enrolled in Camp Innovation this summer will be the first to experience CREATE and provide feedback. Educators will also have an opportunity to preview the space this fall.
CREATE is currently recruiting for Volunteer Facilitators to assist in developing and running workshops in CREATE Resource Centers: the Wood Shop, Artistry Hub and Electronics Zone.
Details about pricing, hours of operation and employment opportunities can be found on azscience.org in the upcoming weeks.
About Arizona Science Center
The mission of Arizona Science Center is to inspire, educate, and engage curious minds through science. The Center, located at 600 E. Washington Street in downtown Phoenix, features more than 300 hands-on exhibits, live demonstrations, the state-of-the-art Dorrance Planetarium and a five-story IMAX theater.