A Fully Integrated Visitor Experience for the Museum Of Arts & Design

A unique installation for a singular institution

A cultural center like nothing else in New York City, the Museum of Arts & Design at 2 Columbus Circle draws more than a quarter million visitors every year. When planning its relocation to a completely redone facility, the museum leadership recognized the need for a vibrant and engaging visitor experience. For that, they turned to PSNI Affiliate integrator HB Communications, Inc.

The project consultants, Shen Milsom Wilke, asked HB to incorporate state-of-the-art audiovisual technology into two critical environments: the Barbara Tober Grand Atrium and the MAD Theater. Each installation needed to deliver on three counts: capability, durability and affordability.


The objectives for the atrium were clear. The space needed to make visitors feel welcome. It needed to orient them by imparting critical information clearly. And the space’s audiovisual technology needed to set the tone for the distinctive, design-driven experience to come. Just as important, the installation had to be of high quality. It had to be durable and long-lasting. And it had to be price competitive.

HB Communications recommended large-screen, LCD products for the majority of applications, and to deliver the required experience they chose one of the leaders in display technology: Samsung.

Throughout the atrium, Samsung 305T and 570DX LCD flat panels are used as exhibit interactive video walls. Touch-sensitive bezels incorporated into the LCD panels allow visitors to interact with the screens’ various digital media. In addition, Samsung provided slim-bezel LCD displays ideal for way-finding displays. Installed in custom-build metal enclosures, they maintain a “form fitting” look without appearing bulky.

The atrium features three Samsung 305T LCD flat panel displays, each tied to a high-end digital signage system that synchronizes and schedules different data being displayed on the screens. Museum information, upcoming events, and even digital art displays can be shown not only to visitors inside, but to the Columbus Circle foot traffic outside.

For the restored MAD Theater in the lower level of the museum, HB Communications installed a new digital video presentation system with 35mm video projection, integrated Dolby Digital surround sound, and audio speech reinforcement. A Crestron control system simplified user control and automation, providing museum staff with the flexibility and capabilities they needed to communicate effectively and dynamically.

Since completion of the project, the Museum of Arts & Design has increased the range of its programming dramatically and dedicated galleries to its growing collection – and its AV technology has kept pace every step of the way.

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