The Tech Interactive, formerly known as the Tech Museum, is a science and technology centre in San Jose, California designed by Mexican architect Ricardo Legorreta and Steinberg Hart. The Tech Museum of Innovation is a family-friendly interactive science and technology centre. They have hands-on exhibits for kids of all ages, from robots to genetics to the internet. 

The Tech Museum of Innovation, undertook the creation of a new building and new exhibitions, opened in 1998. The seamless aesthetic blend and iconic experiences observed within the iconic architecture of the architect. 

By retaining his familiar bright palette, the architect created a starkly rectangular design, its main sculptural elements protruding from the flat roof, a deep blue truncated cone and a similarly saturated blue hemisphere. 

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Image 1 – The Tech Interactive ©www.californiabeaches.com/attraction/tech-museum-innovation/
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The Tech Interactive ©www.tripsavvy.com/san-jose-tech-museum-1479234

A glass form within a colourful, planar, stucco frame is within a plaza. Each face of the three-level building has its distinctive colour.

The 200,000 square feet Tech Museum of Innovation is a three-level, structural steel building with a pleasing and inviting simple exterior. The exterior has facades of 200 feet with no joints. Inside there are two levels of exhibits and one level of retail or public circulation. 

The exhibit areas are into four themes: galleries and explorations, life tech, communications and innovations, having 250 exhibits. 

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The Tech Interactive © www.sanjose.org/listings/tech-interactive
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The Tech Interactive © www.flickr.com/photos/nh7a/2302843130

There is a characteristic Dome Roof over the theatre setting. Upon the flat area of the roof, there is an exhibit area for the patrons to enjoy the skyline of San Jose. 

A 299-seat domed IMAX theatre is the architectural and programmatic centre of the facility and served by an adjacent cafe, gift shop, and vast public lobby or atrium serving as event space. 

Lobby space features the exhibit spaces, both stationary and suspended from the ceiling. The building contains a variety of public meeting rooms and staff offices. 

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Image 5 – The Tech Interactive ©www.expedia.com/pictures/california/san-jose/the-tech-museum-of-Innovation.d6069495

At the entrance to the Exhibits, there are two sets of escalators, one leading upstairs, and one downstairs. But there is no signage of what to expect on each floor. Upstairs lead to “Tech for the global good” area.

The area contains five booths, each with an interactive display through a video about the efforts of innovators who are working to make our future cleaner, safer and better.

The mission statement is displayed boldly via a big banner near the ticket booths. There is a set of electronic kiosks near the entrance that vends tickets.

A human-assisted robot keeps roving around the ticket booth area, interacts and helps people with queries.

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Image 6 – The Tech Interactive ©commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:The_Tech_Museum_of_Innovation_01718.JPG

There is also a big-screen display that shows information about the current IMAX shows and other events at the Tech Interactive.

These displays have a clean design. Nothing too fancy, but very educational. After these booths, there are three visual displays (art + tech) termed as Reboot Reality.

The structure can distinguish in two phases. Phase A includes the foundations, basement walls, structural steel frame, metal decks while phase B includes the concrete metal decks, exterior and interior wall finishes, site concrete and landscape. 

The structure overall consists of 15,187 tons of concrete, 80,000 handmade tiles, nine restrooms, 95 miles of electrical wire, 19 miles of electrical conduit piping, 45 miles of phone wire, 400 tons of ductwork, 12 miles of water and drainpipe, 17,600 square feet of wood floor, 144 doors, 2,000 square feet of glass, 3,800 light fixtures, 101 trees, 100 computer monitors, 2,224 copper jacks and 475 network outlets.

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The Tech Interactive ©www.thetech.org/floor-maps
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The Tech Interactive ©www.thetech.org/floor-maps
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The Tech Interactive ©www.thetech.org/floor-maps
Author

Manvi Khandelwal, a 20-year-old, is an architecture student. She had been passionate for architecture, since her childhood. She always thought of architecture as a way of living life, apart from designing spaces. She loves to dance, and to her architecture is a choreography of volumes to define her environment.

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