September 19, 2015
The New York City Department of Design and Construction STEAM Initiatives Division participated in the Staten Island Museum Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at the Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden. The Ribbon Cutting Ceremony featured remarks from NYC DDC Commissioner Feniosky Peña-Mora, City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Staten Island Borough President Jim Oddo, City Councilmember Deborah Rose, State Senator Diane Savino, Assembly Member Michael Cusick, Assembly Member Matt Titone, and Staten Island Museum Board Interim President & CEO Cheryl Adolph.
Founded in 1881 and celebrating its 134th year, Staten Island Museum engages visitors with interdisciplinary exhibitions and educational programs that explore the dynamic connections between natural science, art, and history based on its diverse collections. The Museum serves over 219,000 adults and school children, both at the Museum and in the community. Visitors can embark on a voyage through time in the Staten Island Ferry exhibit, see rocks glow in the dark in the Hall of Natural Sciences, and experience the lives of Staten Island’s first inhabitants.
After four years of construction, the $24.4 million project at Snug Harbor is complete. The project has achieved LEED Gold Rating, featuring construction waste management recycling, use of new finishes with recycled content, and re-milling of original wood framing to new flooring throughout the building. The museum gallery benches were designed by Tod Bracher through the Built/NYC pilot program which commissions independent NYC based designers to provide economic stimulus to the city’s design sector.
The ribbon cutting ceremony featured family-friendly festivities, including free admission to the Staten Island Museum, lawn games, food, live music, and crafts for kids. STEAM Initiatives Program Coordinators Sandrine Fermino, Ershaun Harris, Jillian Ramos, and Teresa Ye, along with two former DDC High School interns spoke to community members about the agency’s ongoing mission to establish a diverse and inclusive pipeline into fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, Architecture/Art, and Mathematics (STEAM) for the City’s youth in underserved communities. STEAM Coordinators distributed information about STEM education and how parents can help prepare their children for futures in such fields. Children were able to participate in the DDC’s “Wheel of STEAM,” where community members answered questions related to STEAM to win a prize. DDC's Percent for Art Deputy Director, Xenia Diente, organized a mural painting activity for community members as a method of construction site beautification for the Staten Island neighborhood. The youths had the opportunity to paint murals of the Staten Island Museum, the borough of Staten Island, and the New York Chinese Scholar’s Garden (another DDC construction project completed in 1999). Approximately 500 children participated in the activity.