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From Old Warehouse to Wonderland: Inside Columbus’ Most Anticipated New Attraction

The Dublin-based design powerhouse, Roto, is stepping out from behind the scenes to launch something Columbus has never seen before—an “experimental museum” in the heart of the Brewery District.

This isn’t just any museum; it’s set to be a groundbreaking space that redefines interactive engagement. And guess where it’s making its home? In a former warehouse on the Whittier Peninsula. Talk about a glow-up!

For 20 years, Roto has been the brains behind some of the most engaging exhibits and attractions for museums around the globe.

They’re the folks who make your museum visits unforgettable, working with names like the Smithsonian and Google and museums across the country, including the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, the Ohio Statehouse Museum, and even COSI. Now, they’re taking a giant leap by opening their first-ever space accessible to the public.

Visitors will be able to dive into 30,000 square feet of pure imagination.

Roto is transforming the old Lazarus warehouse into an experimental playground that promises to blend creativity with technology in ways we’ve yet to experience.

“The future of museums and attractions is being shaped by creative design technology. We are excited to be building something truly original that will only be found here in Columbus,” says Joseph Wisne, Roto’s founding partner. His words aren’t just promises; they’re a peek into the future of interactive storytelling and education.

“The idea of an experimental museum is to have room to actually experiment!” explained Wisne. “There are already immersive experiences out in the suburbs, too. We looked and looked and finally found the perfect spot.”

space museum exhibit
via Facebook

But what exactly is an “experimental museum”?

While Roto is keeping the juiciest details under wraps for now, they assure us it’s going to be a novel form of interactive engagement. If their past work is anything to go by, expect to be wowed.

Roto isn’t your average design firm. They’ve morphed from a 12-person team to nearly 100 strong, boasting a revenue of $35 million in 2023.

The chosen spot for this venture, dubbed The Audubon, is the last original structure standing tall on the Whittier Peninsula.

It’s not just Roto setting up shop here; the building hosts a vibrant community including Nocterra Tap, Vertical Adventures, and The Fit Club. David Bishoff, president of the E.V. Bishoff Company, which owns the building, expressed his enthusiasm, “When we saw the plans for the experimental museum, we knew immediately that we wanted it to be a part of The Audubon.”

So, if you’re as excited as we are, keep your eyes peeled for more details and renderings from Roto as they prepare to unveil this game-changing space later this year.