Our design approach for one of the world’s first Children’s Museums was simple – a natural landscape that rewards the curiosity of a child’s eyes and hands. In coordination with an innovative rooftop pavilion by acclaimed architect Toshiko Mori and engineers ARUP, we developed a 20,000-square foot rooftop plaza in the context of architect Raphael Vinoly’s vibrant yellow building facade. Movable fixtures within the plaza create flexible spaces that respond to the museum’s diverse programming needs. These in turn are complemented by anchor features for thoughtfully programmed public spaces: The Native Woodland for exploration and learning; The Green for free play; The Lounge, for picnics and relaxing parents.
Planting is introduced as an interactive and educational tool, combining colors, textures, and leaf types to create a dynamic landscape that engages a child’s perspective. Small groves of trees have been carefully located to provide thermal comfort in the most exposed areas of the rooftop. This flexible rooftop space accommodates events ranging from school groups and children's performances to large-scale weekend weddings.