SEATTLE, June 29, 2017 — LMN Architects announces the firm’s engagement to design the new Ocean Pavilion for the Seattle Aquarium. The approximately 50,000-square-foot Pavilion will be sited adjacent to the existing Seattle Aquarium, currently located at Piers 59 and 60.
The new Ocean Pavilion will be a unique facility, integrating a complex building program into a dynamic urban context and relating it to the natural ecology of the Puget Sound waterfront. The Pavilion will frame the new Aquarium Plaza—a major public space at the northern end of Seattle’s Central Waterfront Development—overlooking Puget Sound and linking back to the Pike Place Market. Together with the renovation of the existing Pier 59 by Mithun, the expansion and renovation will enable the Aquarium to provide an unparalleled education and research experience.
“LMN Architects brings a rich history and commitment to community-focused civic projects, combined with a strong design approach that connects public-focused building programs with the crafting of urban space and experience. We couldn’t be happier to have them as a partner on this project,” said Bob Davidson, CEO of the Seattle Aquarium.
The building will contain a variety of exhibits that highlight tropical and reef ecosystems. A 350,000 gallon warm-water tank, featuring multiple viewing points at different levels, will house sharks and other larger species. Smaller “jewel” tanks and dynamic exhibits will incorporate new technologies to collectively communicate the one-world ocean conservation story. An open gathering and viewing space adjacent to the large tank will provide flexible space capable of hosting special events for approximately 200 people. Gathering spaces for smaller groups participating in ‘hands-on’ education activities and interpretation are also envisioned.
“We are thrilled to be selected for this important project,” said Mark Reddington, FAIA, Partner at LMN Architects. “The Seattle Aquarium is a leader in education and advocacy for the health of the world’s oceans. For the City of Seattle, this project will create a prominent civic presence for the Aquarium and form the primary public connection between the new waterfront promenade to Pike Place Market.”
With its mission of Inspiring Conservation of Our Marine Environment, the Seattle Aquarium has played a significant role in the cultural and educational life of Seattle since its opening in 1977. The Aquarium facility is owned by the City of Seattle and managed by the non-profit Seattle Aquarium Society. Annual increases in attendance, a growing regional and international interest in ocean health, and the need to address aging infrastructure were among the contributing factors leading to the development of plans to expand and renovate its existing facilities within the context of the Central Waterfront Development.
Seattle-based LMN Architects specializes in the planning and design of significant public and private projects, including cultural venues, education facilities, convention centers, office buildings, mixed-use developments, transit stations, and other urban environments that celebrate and enrich communities. The firm is the recipient of the 2016 American Institute of Architects Architecture Firm Award.
About the Seattle Aquarium
The Seattle Aquarium is one of Washington State’s leading environmental education and stewardship institutions, and the region’s gathering place for discussion and sharing information about marine conservation. It maintains a number of research initiatives in cooperation with federal, state, zoological and university partners. The Aquarium is accredited by the AZA.