You are here

Carnegie Science Center

-A A +A
1989–1991, Tasso Katselas Associates. 1 Allegheny Ave.
  • Carnegie Science Center

Blessed with a dramatic site on the Ohio River just west of Heinz Field and prominently visible from the Point, the red and gray Carnegie Science Center stands as a guardedly populist temple to science and education. The Center is part of the Carnegie consortium, whose main museum and library stands in Oakland ( AL41), but whose Andy Warhol Museum ( AL67) lies less than a ten-minute walk away. Tasso Katselas gave the four-story building three major components: Omnimax theater, planetarium and auditorium space, and housing for specialized exhibits, all linked by a system of ramps and staircases to provide visual and physical unity. Somewhat brooding and somber despite color touches in red, the structure's domed Omnimax theater is on the city side, and a glass-skinned atrium and science theater are at the opposite end. Between the two sits the main exhibition block. The entrance is on the land side, reached by a bridge from the parking lot. Busses use a second entrance below the bridge, which also allows direct access to the Omnimax theater.

A certain degree of disorientation seems endemic and possibly useful in science centers, and the lobby and attached atrium of this one do not disappoint, with a large and noisy gift shop, Aquabatics Fountain, and a restaurant overlooking the river. The three upper levels are each devoted to different themes. The interior is at its best with throngs of students climbing and descending its ramps, while the grounds are at their best when peaceful. Science education continues on the Ohio River with the USS Requin, a docked World War II diesel-electric submarine, and a barge that regularly navigates the three rivers as a floating marine laboratory.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Lu Donnelly et al.
×

Data

What's Nearby

Citation

Lu Donnelly et al., "Carnegie Science Center", [Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/PA-01-AL68.

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of PA vol 1

Buildings of Pennsylvania: Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania, Lu Donnelly, H. David Brumble IV, and Franklin Toker. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2010, 90-90.

If SAH Archipedia has been useful to you, please consider supporting it.

SAH Archipedia tells the story of the United States through its buildings, landscapes, and cities. This freely available resource empowers the public with authoritative knowledge that deepens their understanding and appreciation of the built environment. But the Society of Architectural Historians, which created SAH Archipedia with University of Virginia Press, needs your support to maintain the high-caliber research, writing, photography, cartography, editing, design, and programming that make SAH Archipedia a trusted online resource available to all who value the history of place, heritage tourism, and learning.

, ,