11a. Memo

Seattle Aquarium Strategic Relationship Presentation

AGENDA MEMORANDUM                        Item No.          11a 
BRIEFING ITEM                            Date of Meeting     September 27, 2022 
DATE:     September 15, 2022 
TO:        Stephen P. Metruck, Executive Director 
FROM:    Mike Merritt, Senior Policy Director 
David Yeaworth, Commission Office Strategic Advisor 
SUBJECT:  Port-Aquarium Strategic Relationship 
In 2021 the Port of Seattle Commission voted to contribute $5 million to the Seattle Aquarium as
a means of 1) developing a “strategic relationship” 2) helping to fund the forthcoming Ocean
Pavilion, and 3) to create a marine-focused exhibit in the Pavilion. The order also asked that the
Executive Director forge a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Port and the
Aquarium to create a framework for the relationship and distribution of funds. 
The MOU has been executed by both parties. Key highlights in it include: 
Work Group 
The Aquarium and Port will establish a work group with representatives from both parties to
investigate opportunities for the two institutions to collaborate. The current list of potential
topics is: 
1) Tourism and other economic development 
2) Sustainability 
3) Marine habitat conservation and restoration including underwater acoustics, kelp
research, and killer whale research 
4) Workforce development 
5) Equity, diversity, and inclusion 
Biennial Work Plans 
The Work Group will create and implement two-year work plans on matters of common interest
related to both parties’ missions and values. Projects within the workplan may and will likely

Template revised April 12, 2018.

COMMISSION AGENDA – Briefing Item No. 11a                                 Page 2 of 3 
Meeting Date: September 27, 2022 
1)  Events 
2)  Promotional materials 
3)  Community outreach 
4)  Job fairs 
5)  Staff- and volunteer-trainings 
6)  Placemaking and signage 
Marine Exhibit 
Once open in 2024, the Ocean Pavilion will contain an exhibit titled ‘The Port Sound Walk,’ which
will provide visitors with an audio experience of underwater life and a display of port-related
jobs. An ad hoc advisory committee of Port leadership has been meeting with staff from the
Aquarium and the Aquarium’s exhibit designer, Thinc Design, since March 2022, to envision the
The Commission will receive a briefing from the Aquarium, Thinc Design, and Port staff on
September 27, 2022, regarding ‘The Port Sound Walk,’ the MOU, plans for forming the Work
Group, and creating and implementing the inaugural biennial work plan. 
The Port and the Aquarium have agreed to the payment and deliverable schedule below. The
parties may agree to an updated schedule by written amendment. 
DELIVERABLE                LUMP SUM                  INVOICE  SUBMITTAL  AND
Project Progress Report        $100,000                       After MOU Execution 
Project Progress Report         $1,000,000                     January 1, 2023 
Project Progress Report         $1,000,000                     January 1, 2024 
Final   Project   Report   and  $900,000                        After Project completion and
Notice of Completion of the                               opening of the Ocean Pavilion
Project                                                            and  marine-focused  exhibit
highlighting     the     Port’s
Progress Report                $1,000,000                     January 1, 2026 
Final Progress Report           $1,000,000                      Prior to the expiration of the
MOU in 2027 
(1)   Port-Aquarium Strategic Relationship Slide Deck 
(2)   Port Sound Walk Exhibit Slide Deck 
(3)   Port-Aquarium Strategic Relationship Memorandum of Understanding 
(4)   Commission Order 2021-13 

Template revised September 22, 2016.

             COMMISSION AGENDA – Briefing Item No. 11a                                 Page 3 of 3 
Meeting Date: September 27, 2022 

November 16, 2021—The Commission passed Order 2021-13 directing the ED to forge an 
MOU between the Port and the Aquarium to create a framework for the strategic
relationship and distribution of funds. 

Template revised September 22, 2016.


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