The North Dakota Heritage Center, located on the Capitol grounds in Bismarck, houses the State Museum, the State Historical Society of North Dakota, the North Dakota Geological Survey and the State Archives. A 2010 expansion added 97,000 square feet of exhibition, storage and office space, and the facility asked AVI Systems to help bring it all to life.



More than a single facility, the North Dakota Heritage Center was a collection of distinct spaces, each with unique features and a common need: for easy-to-use, reliable AV technology that enhanced the visitor experience.

Russel Reid Auditorium and Great Planes Theatre
The auditorium, seating up to 275 people, showcases live programming including music and theater performances, and educational seminars, as well as historical documentary films. The smaller Great Planes also offers entertainment options for groups of up to 70 people and serves as an overflow room for the auditorium.

Adaptation Gallery
Here life-size replicas of Tyrannosaurus Rex and Triceratops tower over museumgoers. Children learn through interactive dinosaur games on iPads located throughout the gallery. Interactive displays, tables and SMART Boards offer a new, hands-on approach for visitors of all ages. Touch an interactive table for a timeline of geological changes in North Dakota from 600 million years ago to present.

Surveillance, Security and Intrusion
AVI installed an extensive surveillance that includes over 120 cameras – 60 on the old system, 64 with the recent expansion. The cameras are broken down into front, side and back doors, hallways, all galleries and the front plaza, and are connected to an alarm system.

Lower Level Operations and Collections
Heritage Center staff are house in the basement along with the museum’s collections. Security key cards, along with facial recognition software, protect the entire floor.

Displays in commons
A central “Hub of History” rounds out the forum with interactive touchscreen kiosks displaying maps, North Dakota history and general gallery information. Large displays are hung above each kiosk for easy visibility when large group tours come through.