People can finally walk into the newly renovated Gateway Arch grounds, but the new museum is still closed until Tuesday, July 3. News 4 is pulling back the curtain to see some of the new exhibits and interactive displays.
The biggest change visitors will notice when they come to the Archgrounds is the entrance. The west side of the arch is a circular sloped, handicap accessible entrance. This is the only entrance. The two-side doors at each leg of the Arch are still there, but they are exits only.
There is also a splash pad at the entrance, which is open to the public to dip their feet in.
When visitors first walk into the visitors center, they will see a giant floor map showing how St. Louis was the starting point of western expansion. People can physically walk along the trails lined out on the maps to follow the pioneers' trek to California.
Once the museum is open, the exhibits will give visitors more in-depth history into western expansion and will show how St. Louis was once the third busiest port in America in the 1850s.
Most of the maps and displays will be interactive.
In the tram lobby, where visitors take the trip to the top of the Arch, there is a gift shop and cafe. Serving food inside the Arch grounds will be a first for the National Park.
A soft opening is happening now. The grand opening is July 3.
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