City of Easton and the Da Vinci Science Centre have signed a one-year Memorandum of Understanding to investigate the feasibility of creating a Da Vinci Science City, a major science centre and aquarium complex in the city’s waterfront area.
The proposed Da Vinci Science City is a response to the increasing demand for educational programmes in the STEAM subjects. These are science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics.
Furthermore, it is seen as a potential catalyst for economic growth in the area.
“It is a game-changing opportunity to position Easton and the Lehigh Valley as a family-friendly destination for the 60 million people of the Mid-Atlantic region, ” commented the Mayor of Easton, Salvatore J. Panto, Jr.
“We could not be more excited to partner with the Da Vinci Science Centre in this transformative project.”
The city has signed an agreement to purchase the proposed site for the 170, 000-square-foot complex.
The current Da Vinci Science Centre in Allentown, Pa. will be repurposed as a Children’s Discovery Centre for kids aged 8 and under.
Plans for the new destination include a state-of-the-art science centre with permanent and traveling exhibit galleries. The complex will also house the largest public aquarium in Pennsylvania as well as an immersive giant screen theatre. Other facilities include a creative workshop, restaurant and a venue for events.
Da Vinci Science City is expected to attract over 600, 000 visitors a year and create 200 permanent full-time equivalent jobs. The intention is to appoint local residents where possible. Estimates suggest the new complex will generate $100 million in total economic activity each year.
The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission has awarded a grant to the Da Vinci Science Centre to fund the feasibility study. The commission is a state agency funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.