July 11, 1998
The McWane Science Center opened in its current facility, the historic building of the former Loveman's department store in downtown Birmingham. The center grew from the merger of two older science centers, the Red Mountain Museum and Discovery Place, funded by the McWane Foundation. The new 180,000 square-foot facility included permanent attractions such as an IMAX® dome theater, a museum with interactive educational features, an aquarium and interactive water exhibit, and a simulated space mission. The center reported more than $1 million in earnings in its first nine weeks and continues to host more than 500,000 visitors annually.