Children's Museum has an eye on the Downtowner motel

The Children's Museum of Western Nevada is only about $8,000 away from a $1.2 million grant that would allow the museum to build an annex building, a plaza and some parking.

The museum was turned down for the million-dollar grant last year simply because a formal audit had not been done on the museum, Executive Director Suzi Meehan said.

Meehan now has applied for smaller grants to cover the cost of a formal audit, estimated at $7,000 to $8,000.

"That audit will open the door for many other grants," Meehan said.

Meehan plans to reapply for the $1.2 million grant this fall.

This would allow the Children's Museum to buy and demolish the neighboring Downtowner Motor Inn. That land would be used to build a 9,000-square-foot annex that would provide space for exhibit construction, storage and classroom area.

"We're out of space here," Meehan said about the historic Civic Auditorium building that once housed city offices, the library and Western Nevada Community College.

Between the annex and the Civic Auditorium, Meehan envisions a plaza setting that school children could use as they visit the museum.

The Children's Museum and the Hardman House are also in early talks about possibly asking to have Ann Street abandoned between their properties to create another plaza.


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