Brooklyn Children's Museum
The Brooklyn Children's Museum is a general purpose museum in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, New York City, USA. Founded in 1899, it was the first museum in the United States and some believe, the world, to cater specifically to children and is unique in its location, predominantly a residential area. Housed in a multi-level underground gallery, the museum underwent an expansion and renovation to double its space, re-opened on September 20, 2008, and became the first green museum in New York City.

In 1975, the museum moved to an award-winning new space, designed by Hardy Holzman Pfeiffer Associates, housed underneath Brower Park following the demolition of the Victorian houses that served as its prior home. The underground gallery provided the ideal location for arranging evolving exhibits. The museum was not intended to solely attract the interest of a young audience, but rather to engage their minds from a young age. Children contribute extensively in the planning of museum exhibits, and have done so for a significant part of its history.

In 1996, the museum was once again renovated at a cost of $7 million to include miniature amphitheaters and a number of new galleries.

In 2005, it was among 406 New York City arts and social service institutions to receive part of a $20 million grant from the Carnegie Corporation, which was made possible through a donation by New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg.

In the same year, work began on the $43 million dollar expansion by Rafael Viñoly that was to nearly double the size of the museum, and handle more than 400,000 visitors each year. As part of its commitment to environmental integrity and energy efficiency, the institution has taken credit for being the first New York City museum to use geothermal wells for heating and cooling purposes.


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Building Activity

  • updated a digital reference
    about 6 years ago via Annotator