The Fairbanks Museum & Planetarium broke ground yesterday on a new annex project that aims to make the building more accessible to everyone, the first new addition in more than 120 years. The 6,000 square-foot Tang Science Annex has been in the works since 2016 but talked about for nearly two decades now. It’ll add new space for hands-on exhibits — and most importantly — accessibility. “When the Fairbanks opened its doors in 1891, accessibility was just not something that was contemplated. The museum was long overdue for an upgrade. The last addition was in 1895. This one brings the museum into the modern age. It adds not just the elevator but also more exhibit space upstairs, and a balcony. And down in the basement, a renovation will allow the Community College of Vermont to locate its St. Johnsbury site. The $5 million project is paid for by a combination of federal, state, and community funding. The construction is expected to be finished by next spring.

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