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Science Center planning temporary move to Tanger

The Long Island Science Center will be moving from its current Peconic Avenue location into a larger temporary space at Tanger Outlets, according to Larry Oxman, president of the center’s board of directors. 

He said they plan to make the move by the end of the month to the Tanger I location formerly occupied by the Lane Bryant store. 

“Tanger gave us a very cooperative deal,” Mr. Oxman said. 

The LISC’s long-term plan is to move into the former Swezey’s building on East Main Street, which it purchased for $1.45 million in 2020. The center also received a $775,500 Regional Economic Development Council grant in December 2019.

The Peconic Avenue site, located under the Summerwind apartments, is too small, Mr. Oxman said. 

“Our main building on Main Street won’t be ready for a while, so we’ve leased space in Tanger Outlets,” Mr. Oxman said. “It’s a big space, over 5,000 square feet. The Peconic Avenue site was only about 1,500 square feet.”

Once the East Main Street site is complete, the Science Center will move into that space, which is just west of what is slated to become the Town Square. Demolition of two vacant buildings in conjunction with the Town Square project began Monday. 

The Science Center plans to lease the space at Tanger until the end of 2022, according to executive director Cailin Kaller. 

“And then we’ll move into the new building,” she said. 

Plans for the former Swezey’s site include a large “maker space,” which is basically space to make things, according to Ms. Kaller. 

Mr. Oxman said the maker space will have things like workbenches, tools, machinery and 3-D printers. 

The Science Center held a one-day “maker’s festival” at Tanger on Saturday, which they hope will become an annual event.

“Part of the reason we did this is that the new building is going to have a maker space on the lower level,” Ms. Kaller said. “The idea is like individual creation, being able to invent things and have the machinery available to do it, without having to buy the machinery yourself.”