After years of searching for a new permanent location, Children’s Museum representatives believe they have found a home in the old Charter Oak International Academy building.
The magnet school is moving to a new building to be constructed on the same site at 425 Oakwood Ave. in 2016.
At an informational meeting concerning the design of that new building on Thursday, Children’s Museum Board of Directors Chairman Rick Liftig said that the proposal is “a home run for the community.”
“We need to develop the next generation of lifelong learners and equip them with curiosity and imagination,” Liftig said. “We also believe the museum to be a community asset. Learning does not stop at 3:20 in the afternoon. Functions and interactions continue through the evening, weekends and summers. This informal learning is just as important as the formal learning.”
The Children’s Museum has a lease at its current location with Kingswood-Oxford that runs through 2017.
But while the timeline appears to match up, the architects from the firm Perkins Eastman hired by the town to handle the Charter Oak project said that the site, at 7 acres, is small. It’s even smaller - at about 5 acres - when considering the trees that are expected to remain untouched during construction.
That wouldn’t leave a lot of space for two buildings.
No one from the town or the school district commented directly on the proposal, though both entities had been approached by the Children’s Museum prior to the meeting.
But, during the meeting, Perkins Eastman representatives spoke of razing the old building.
Regardless, Liftig noted that more work needed to be done before a decision could be rendered on the proposal.
“We have to perform due diligence in the upcoming weeks and make sure that this proposal is fully feasible,” Liftig said. “We are prepared to do this and this dream could happen.”