Explora, Albuquerque’s premier science and children’s museum, is expanding it’s programming and it’s footprint. X Studio is a new 8,000 sf STEAM education and workforce development center that further’s Explora’s Next Great Minds initiative. Their mission is to provide all New Mexico youth with equitable access to opportunity in STEAM career fields.
X-Studio is a place of transformation. It is a transformation of Explora programming – from child focused activities to teen skill development – and it is a space of transformation for teens, developing concepts that encourage future professional STEAM workforce opportunities. Studio SW designed a building that reflects this transformation through program and design.
This 8,000 sf facility will provide space for physics, chemistry, robotics, design, film, and coding programs.The envelope is developed from the language of the existing building, but reformed as though in mid-transformation to its next step in evolution. The materials are adapted from the existing building, with its geometric shapes beginning to overlap and pull away from each other – and in areas wrap like a cocoon. This movement gives us the opportunity to expose systems within the building, and provide opportunities to use the building itself as a tool for STEAM learning.