For over 50 years, the 1912 Willis Polk designed PG&E Power Station at 400 Jibboom Street has stood empty, an elegant, decaying hulk on the banks of the Sacramento River. Prominently visible from Interstate 5 just north of Downtown, this historic site will be transformed into a premier regional destination for science education, exploration and promotion in Northern California.
The new riverfront complex - designed to achieve LEED Platinum - includes eight interactive, content-rich exhibit spaces, a new full-dome digital theater, a new Aerojet Challenger Learning Center, scientific discovery labs/classrooms, green roof, cafe with riverfront views and access from the American River Bike Trail. This multi-faceted campus is projected to draw approximately 320,000 visitors a year.
In April 2011, a grant of $7M was awarded to the Powerhouse Science Center to build the new Earth & Space Science Center building which will house the new full-dome digital theater, the new Aerojet Challenger Learning Center and The Magic Planet interactive exhibit, among others. In December 2011, Aerojet donated $1.5 million for the new Aerojet Challenger Learning Center. In May 2014, the City of Sacramento voted to pay $350,000 per year for 20 years in support of the project.
Interior project renderings by West Office Exhibit Design.