Brook Louis Meier
The project adds a world class Science Academy and a dynamic Hotel / Convention Center to its Science Museum, addressing the financial problems that most museums face, sharing resources between all 3 entities.
This strategy increases profits allowing for more frequent changes to the museum exhibitions, repeat visits by locals, and establishes a unique brand that would be a world wide destination. The site becomes maximized physically with this strategy and also creates a 24 hour usage cycle with functions and events that spread out (and overlap) through the typical day.
The sharing of resources and staff can help to minimize unneccesary strain on the each institution, providing managerial flexibility as well as superior service.
By creating a flexible system that is inherent to the building’s structure we can avoid a common problem in museum design.
Implementing a “plug and play” mindset, the permanent exhibition terraces describe every day science through the lens of the 4 classical elements – WATER / AIR / FIRE / EARTH, while the VOID becomes a space of experimentation hanging above, displaying hybridized galleries on topics like Genetic Mutation, Animal Extinction, Global Warming, or The Meaning of Life.
These galleries are designed to be easily and repeatedly reconfigured – becoming a vital part of the Mumbai event calendar as well as a relevant player in the world of Science education.
The project addresses the four most common building problems in India: Electrical Supply, Thermal Comfort, Construction Quality, and Proper Drainage. Through the inclusion of photovoltaic cells, the building will take advantage of the sun as it’s main power supply, using the local power grid strictly as an emergency backup. The creation of chimney vents will allow for the building to pull cool air through the spaces and expel the hot air. Constructing large portions of the building with custom design precast members, the building will become very easy to construct and can even make use of local – low skilled labor. The whole site will be made into an abstracted reading of topography by the construction of terraces. This will help control drainage, minimize erosion, and provide activity zones for science demonstrations throughout the site.
Creating a new Science City is an opportunity to not only define an iconic building, but also to set in motion the education of millions. As India continues to develop past the internet age – science will become an increasingly vital part of our everyday lives. This project is a prototype for a uniquely Indian experience – no longer a Science City, but rather a Science Ecosystem – where all parts are interdependent and sustainable – financially, environmentally, & culturally.