Minnesota Landscape Arboretum Bee Discovery Center

“This project shows what you can accomplish, not with fancy tools, but by using intuitive design practices.”—AIA COTE Top Ten Awards Jury

The health of pollinators is in danger from pesticide use, lack of forage, destruction of nest habitats, and colony collapse disorder. Serving as the outreach arm of the University of Minnesota’s Bee and Pollinator Research Lab, this new center gives next generations an opportunity to learn about the intricate and essential world of pollinators. Located on the Red Barn Farm site at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, the center features exhibit space for telling the story of honey bees, Monarch butterflies, and other pollinators, while inviting visitors of all ages to sense the world from the vantage point of the small pollinators. A learning lab provides space for interpretation and educational activities. The design connects interior program spaces to an outdoor environment that features demonstration pollinator gardens and bee hives.

"I like the way that it changes character as one moves through it, and the interior surface relationship to the exterior surface. It takes a typical sort of shed and turns it into a beautiful and engaging public space."
—AIA Minnesota Honor Awards Juror
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