ConsultEcon Management & Economic Insight

Museums are important to a community’s cultural, educational and economic well being.  ConsultEcon is proud to be a member of the museum community and provide market, economic, business and planning services to create successful new museums and support existing museums to remain economically vital while maximizing community benefits, mission achievement, and their market potential.


Science & Technology

University of Arizona Science Center:  Tucson, Arizona
Evaluated the market support and economic potential of a major new science center to be developed as the centerpiece attraction of Tucson’s downtown redevelopment plan, the Río Nuevo Master Plan.  We worked closely with Flandrau Science Center management to develop future operating budgets and strategies; advised on a building program that optimized the visitor experience, attendance potential and earned revenue potential; and provided ongoing support to the Flandrau Science Center and University as they sought approval from the City and State for the project.

San Francisco, California
As part of the Exploratorium’s plans for its future, ConsultEcon evaluated the potential of a new location for the Exploratorium.  We reviewed the attendance potential and earned revenue potential for the Exploratorium’s expanded facility at the new site.  This study also included a baseline evaluation of their historical operation, as well as a sensitivity analysis of the potential of moving from a six- to a seven-day operation.

Science Center of Tech Valley: 
Schenectady, New York
The Schenectady Museum, which now offers science and history interpretation as well as a planetarium, is reinventing itself as the Science Center of Tech Valley.  ConsultEcon participated in a multi-phased, multi-disciplinary planning process to identify a new site in Schenectady, and then to plan facility size and building program.  This work included a market study, alternative site and project financial analysis and preferred site operating plan. 

California Academy of Sciences:  San Francisco, California
Assisted the California Academy of Sciences in planning for revitalization of their facilities, which include the Steinhart Aquarium, Museum of Natural History, and the Morrison Planetarium.  We evaluated a range of options for the Academy, including staying in Golden Gate Park or moving to a new site downtown.  The Academy stayed in Golden Gate Park and opened the new facility in 2008.

Mountain Empire Science Center:  Danville, Virginia
This science center is part of the Science Museum of Virginia system.  We evaluated an expansion plan that would more than double the museum in size and greatly expand its service delivery.  This facility expansion successfully opened in 2005.  Subsequently, we evaluated an expansion plan including a large format theater.

Science Museum of Virginia: 
Richmond, Virginia
Evaluated potential investments and enhancements to the Science Museum of Virginia campus most notably relocating the Virginia Aviation Museum to the Broad Street Campus.  Also analyzed were opportunities for a new 3D Large Format Theater (LFT); and enhancing the campus to become a destination in its own right.  The investments and their overall attendance and operating impacts were evaluated for a ten-year phased-in period.

California Science Center:  Los Angeles, California
The California Science Center has redeveloped itself in several major phases.  We provided management with projections of attendance potential and worked with staff in preparing future operating budgets for a major expansion phase.

Museum of Discovery and Science: 
Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
Conducted an evaluation of alternative expansion programs for this major science museum.  This included evaluation of the market and operating impacts of the expanded exhibits and the higher resulting IMAX attendance.

Ocean Science Center and OceanQuest Learning Center:  New London, Connecticut
We served as a financial advisor to The Connecticut Development Authority for this proposed ocean science museum project.  This included reviewing the project’s market study, operating plan and financing strategy.

Nashua Technology Center:  Nashua, New Hampshire
This museum was planned to celebrate Nashua's technology and manufacturing heritage while creating dynamic and exciting environments for people of all ages to experiment and learn in a hands-on environment.  ConsultEcon participated in site selection, facility programming, market potential and operating planning.