Mobius Science Center

Spokane, Washington 

Project Size: 12,000 square feet
Designers: Renate Associates

Making Science Fun

With a mission to spark curiosity and ignite imagination, the Mobius Science Center opened in Septeber 2012. Housed in 27,000 square foot space the museum features 65 interactive experiences explore a range of sciences including physics, acoustics, optics, biology, energy, chemistry, ecology, human anatomy, robotics, and earth science. From aerodynamics to chemistry – and energy to acoustics, aspiring young scientists engage in active, multi-sensory learning increasing cognitive, social, and creative skills to encourage an entrepreneurial spirit of innovation. The design reflects an industrial ambiance that forgoes bright color, plasticized materials and flashing neon in favor of a more organic palette of steel, glass and wood. Natural light floods the space through floor to ceiling windows and glowing walls hover over natural concrete floors resulting in a warm environment.

Improving On An Excellent Design

Working collaboratively with Renate Associates, kubik maltbie brought a solution driven approach to the project providing value insights to achieve the project objectives and remain within budget. When proposed re-claimed roughhewn wood works station tabletops turned out to be cost prohibitive, the maple butcher block solution perfectly maintained the integrity of the aesthetic while remaining within budget. Moreover, it proved to be an improvement to the original design that called for the tabletops to be etched with small font text that would have been obscured by the reclaimed wood approach. The Water Rocket interactive exhibit involves four transparent, cylindrical towers pumped full of water creating pressure that “launches” a plastic bottle. Finding the appropriate pressure levels to create an indoor activity required ensuring that the minimum pressure applied by a child was enough to launch the bottle while the maximum didn’t crash it into the top of the tower. Carefully tested prototyping was imperative for the success of what has become an imminently popular experience. Value engineering throughout the project increased structural stability and durability, while ensuring the entire project stayed on budget. kubik maltbie’s scope of work included; design development, prototyping, fabrication and installation.

kubik maltbie did an outstanding job of building us highly functional and attractive exhibits while adhering to our budget and schedule.”

Eric Miller

exhibits director, Mobius Science Center