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Landmark design | The Cade Museum for Creativity and Invention

Dr. James Robert Cade, Bob to his familiars, found joy in discovery and hope in the act of invention. His mind and spirit knew no bounds. He formulated Gatorade. He was a kidney specialist. He grew roses, played violin, spoke German, taught Sunday school, served in the Navy, discovered connections between nutrition and neurological disorders, invented a lifesaving football helmet, and collected Studebakers. 

The museum named in Cade’s honor reflects his expansive mind, love of humanity, appreciation for classic harmony, and his never-ending quest to forge new connections. Designed by GWWO Architects in Baltimore, the Cade Museum for Creativity and Invention opened in May 2018.  

The bright copper landmark shines as a community anchor in Depot Park. GWWO was inspired by the Fibonacci spiral, a golden ratio associated with classical beauty, and by neurons. The museum’s design serves as a metaphor for the human mind, resembling a neuron. Outward dendrite-like extensions integrate the potential for future building expansion while still maintaining visual integrity. As the museum’s programming and outreach grow in scope each year, its exterior has the ability to also grow, change and form new structural connections.

The Rotunda melds the modern and ancient with 55-foot ceilings and a spectacular oculus skylight peers into the “untraveled world whose margin fades,” inspired by Cade’s favorite poet, Alfred Tennyson. Glass walls and a Fibonacci spiral staircase inspire imaginings of all that’s infinite. 

Inside, a vortex of creative energy swirls with a flurry of fun and educational activity. Individual wedge-shaped galleries emanate organically from the Cade’s core. 

Outside, a plaza surrounds visitors and connects them to nature via the scenic backdrop of Depot Park.

The Cade Museum is open Thursday through Friday from noon to 5 p.m. and Saturday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.