What was once the largest solar observatory in the world is now undergoing a transformation to become a one-of-a-kind facility for sharing the wonders of astronomy with people around the globe.
Dedicated in 1962 and retired in 2017, the McMath-Pierce Solar Telescope at Kitt Peak National Observatory (KPNO) in southern Arizona was used to make numerous scientific discoveries. In 2018, the National Science Foundation (NSF) awarded a grant to convert the facility into a unique outreach center that will provide the public with new ways to experience the cutting-edge research being carried out at KPNO and NSF’s other astronomy facilities around the globe.
Our scope includes the 7,175 SF remodel of the McMath-Pierce Solar telescope to create the Windows on the Universe Center for Astronomy Outreach educational facility. The center is located about 50 miles west of Tucson, AZ in the Schuk Toak district on Tohono o’odham Nation land.
The project includes miscellaneous improvements to the existing building to create a safe and attractive environment for visitors. The new space includes interactive exhibit galleries, astronomy visualization theaters, a state-of-the-art planetarium, and exhibit space. Our scope of work included identifying and safely removing hazardous materials as part of the major demolition, acoustic upgrades, and structural, concrete, mechanical, and electrical upgrades.