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Boonshoft Considers Moving Springfield Location To Downtown

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Wayne Baker
/
WYSO
The train exhibit is among the most popular the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery's Upper Valley Mall location.

The Boonshoft Museum of Discovery's Springfield satellite location has six months to decide if it will remain at its current Upper Valley Mall location, or move downtown.  The Springfield city commission has approved leasing the downtown Myers Market Building, which currently houses United Senior Services, to the Boonshoft according to Mark Meister, Boonshoft's president.

Boonshoft's lease at the mall ends March 31st, but  Meister is hoping that the museum can stay in Springfield—even though attendance dipped to just more than 20,000 in 2015, from more than 25,000 in 2014.

"At this point we haven't heard from the new owners of the mall regarding our next lease, so I don't know where they stand on it, although my hope is that we would be able to extend it, if not with a regular lease, then on a month-to-month basis," Meister said.

Creating an endowment and raising money will be the Boonshoft's big goals in the next six months.  It would cost about $2 million to renovate the building the museum is looking at in downtown Springfield.