Science World (Vancouver)

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Science World
Science World at TELUS World of Science.jpg
Science World (Vancouver) is located in Downtown Vancouver (British Columbia)
Science World (Vancouver)
Location of Science World in Vancouver
Former name
  • Telusphere (2005)
  • Telus World of Science (2005–2020)
Established1989 (1989)
Location1455 Quebec Street,
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Coordinates49°16′24″N 123°06′14″W / 49.273251°N 123.103767°W / 49.273251; -123.103767
TypeScience museum
Visitors1,009,583 (2019)[1]
ChairpersonLauni Skinner
ArchitectBruno Freschi
Public transit accessTranslinkexpo.svg Main Street–Science World

Science World is a science centre run by a not-for-profit organization of the same name in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. It is located at the end of False Creek and features many permanent interactive exhibits and displays, as well as areas with varying topics throughout the years.

Prior to the building being handed over to Science World by the city government in 1987, the building was built as Expo Centre for the Expo 86 world's fair. Following the end of Expo 86, the building was re-purposed as a science centre. The science centre opened on May 6, 1989, as Science World.[2] From 2005 to 2020, the museum was branded as Science World at Telus World of Science, before it reverted to its original name.


In 1977, Barbara Brink ran mobile hands-on exhibits known as the Extended I around British Columbia's Lower Mainland. Later, the temporary Arts, Sciences & Technology Centre opened in downtown Vancouver on January 15, 1982, attracting over 600,000 visitors. Another 400,000 benefited from the centre's outreach programs, which were delivered around the province.

When Vancouver was chosen to host the transportation-themed 1986 World's Fair (Expo 86), a Buckminster Fuller–inspired geodesic dome was designed by Expo's chief architect Bruno Freschi to serve as the fair's Expo Centre.[3] Construction began in 1984 and was completed by early 1985. After Expo closed its gates in October of the following year, an intensive lobbying campaign was launched to secure the landmark building, relocate the "Arts, Sciences and Technology Centre" into the post-Expo dome, and convert the Expo Centre into Science World. With much government backing, the dome was obtained from the province and a massive fund-raising campaign ensued. Donations from the federal, provincial and municipal governments, the GVRD, the private sector, foundations, and individuals contributed $19.1 million to build an addition to the Expo Centre, redesign the interior and fabricate exhibits. In 1988, in a four-month preview, over 310,000 visitors came to see the new building. A year later, the 400-seat Omnimax theatre in the upper section of the dome was opened, extending upon the 3D IMAX theatre which was built in 1986 for the Expo "Transitions" film series.[4]

The centre entered its first title sponsorship agreement with Alcan Inc. in 1996, renaming its Omnimax Theatre the Alcan Omnimax Theatre. Alcan later decided to sponsor the organization in different ways and the theatre returned to its original name, the Omnimax Theatre.

Ken Spencer Science Park shortly after its opening in 2012

In January 2005, the building was officially renamed "Telusphere" as part of an agreement where Telus gave a $9-million donation in return for the naming rights to the building. This new name proved universally unpopular. In mid-2005, the name of the science centre was changed to "Science World at the Telus World of Science". The brand "Telus World of Science" was used for several other science centres in Calgary and Edmonton.[a] The naming rights agreement ended in 2020, with the science centre dropping "Telus World of Science" from its name. During this period, the name change did not affect the nearby Main Street–Science World SkyTrain station.

During the 2010 Winter Olympics, Science World played host to "Sochi World", a hospitality area representing the country of Russia, hosts of the 2014 Winter Olympics. The attraction closed in mid-January 2010 to facilitate the transformation, and was re-opened that March.[5] Science World underwent renovation after the 2010 Winter Olympics. The indoor renovations were completed by mid-2012 and the adjacent Ken Spencer Science Park opened in late 2012.[6]

On July 29, 2020, the organization's board of governors announced that BC Liberal MLA from Surrey-White Rock, Tracy Redies, would be resigning her legislature seat and taking over as the CEO of Science World, from September 14, 2020. The new CEO would be replacing the interim CEO, Janet Wood.[7][8]


A member of the museum guides children through a demonstration.

Science World runs a variety of outreach programs all over British Columbia.[9] Some examples include Scientists and Innovators in the Schools, a volunteer-based mentor program to inspire students' interest in STEM through interactive presentations in classrooms;[10] On the Road, where staff travel extensively throughout the province to conduct workshops and present science-themed shows in schools and communities that otherwise would not have access to a local science centre;[11] and Super Science Club, where Science World educators conduct after-school programs in underserved schools to inspire at-risk children to become passionate about lifelong science and technology learning;[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Telus World of Science centres were institutions sponsored by Telus. All science centres branded under "Telus World of Science" operated independently of one another.


  1. ^ "Biggest tourist attractions in B.C. in 2021". Business in Vancouver. February 8, 2021. Retrieved April 20, 2021.
  2. ^ Science World History | Science World British Columbia. Retrieved on 2015-01/-15
  3. ^ "Our Iconic Facility", Science World webpage. Retrieved January 4, 2014
  4. ^ Science World - OMNIMAX Theatre - OMNIMAX Facts Archived June 26, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ "The Russians are coming to Science World". Metro Vancouver. Archived from the original on November 4, 2014. Retrieved February 19, 2014.
  6. ^ Ken Spencer Science Park | Science World British Columbia. Retrieved on April 12, 2014.
  7. ^ "Science World Board of Governors announce appointment of new CEO - Tracy Redies" (PDF). Science World. July 29, 2020. Retrieved August 3, 2020.
  8. ^ "Surrey-White Rock MLA Tracy Redies quits to become CEO of Science World". Vancouver Sun. Retrieved August 3, 2020.
  9. ^ Science World British Columbia. Retrieved on April 12, 2014.
  10. ^ Scientists and Innovators in the Schools | Science World British Columbia. Retrieved on November 1, 2021.
  11. ^ On The Road | Science World British Columbia. Retrieved on April 12, 2014.
  12. ^ Super Science Club | Science World British Columbia. Retrieved on April 12, 2014.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 49°16′24″N 123°06′14″W / 49.273251°N 123.103767°W / 49.273251; -123.103767