also raising funds for the major capital campaign. It’s
a daunting challenge but we have been preparing for this moment, and
in our regional and state maritime history leadership context now we
must seize it and move forward with vision, vitality and hard work.
Thanks for your support in helping achieve this new museum milestone
and the even more challenging but rewarding goals ahead.
Best, Chuck Fowler - PSMHS President
Seattle City Council Approves Partnership with MOHAI
I am delighted to report that MOHAI’s move toward a new museum at
the historic Naval Reserve Armory at Lake Union Park took a major
step forward yesterday, when the full Seattle City Council
unanimously approved the governing principles for the MOHAI-City
partnership which will realize that vision. I wanted to share the
news and provide details.
I also wanted to take this moment to reiterate what you, MOHAI
President Jerry Vandenberg and I discussed last week, and what MOHAI
Chair Jeff Peace and I shared with you and other PSMHS leaders at
dinner earlier in the month—that the transformation of the Armory is
a key element in the revitalization of the MOHAI-PSMHS partnership,
a partnership that now dates back a half century and has renewed
importance as we move toward a new home. I are particularly excited
to share with you some specific design concepts at our October 16
retreat—I am anxious to get your feedback and thoughts as we proceed
forward with exhibit and program plans.
Let me explain the city action: The adopted principles call for
allowing MOHAI to receive full financial compensation for its
current building, associated land, and tenant improvements;
transferring the Armory to MOHAI ownership while maintaining city
ownership and responsibility for the underlying piers; allowing
MOHAI to leverage federal tax credits for the rehabilitation of the
Armory; providing MOHAI with annual operating support of $300,000
when the new museum is open; and requiring a robust maritime
heritage partnership among the various organizations at the park.
MOHAI, of course, will be fully responsible for completing the
capital campaign, managing the construction project and operating
the museum for the community.
With this action, the City has officially embraced the project and
has devised a clear path toward its successful realization. In
several weeks, MOHAI and the city will start working on the specific
agreements that implement these principles—agreements we hope to
have in place by mid-2009, with construction to start in early 2010
and the new museum open to the public in the late spring of 2012.
The result will be a truly remarkable history museum in a
spectacular new park in the very heart of our region.
The council action yesterday follows nearly two years of due
diligence, including the development of architectural plans,
business plans, fundraising plans, market research, costs estimates,
permit reviews and more. I have attached an article from
yesterday’s PI that provides a good overview of the action
yesterday—and the exciting work ahead.
And I look forward to working with you on exhibit and program plans
this fall. Thanks again for your continued support and
encouragement, and for your hard work on the MOHAI-PSMHS
Leonard Garfield - Executive Director MOHAI