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Seattle Aquarium is getting a massive new building

Including a 350,000-gallon warm-water tank

Courtesy of LMN Architects

The Seattle Aquarium is set to have a new addition: a multi-story “Ocean Pavilion” with views of both the facility’s marine life and Elliott Bay. The circular building, with paths twisting up around a large, central tank leading to a roof deck, will be located adjacent to the existing facility, which is on piers 59 and 60.

The pavilion, a $100 million project, will be designed by LMN Architects. It’ll expand the aquarium’s exhibits, but it also goes hand-in-hand with dramatic overhauls coming to the waterfront.

In Seattle’s waterfront plans, a new Aquarium Plaza connects to Pike Place Market, including its new Marketfront expansion. The new pavilion interacts with the renewed space and expands visitor capacity.

"Last year, we had 850,000 people come here. About 60 to 70 days during the year, the aquarium was in the range of capacity," CEO of Seattle Aquarium Bob Davidson told the Puget Sound Business Journal last week.

With the revamped waterfront, he said, attendance is expected to double.

The pavilion adds 50,000-square-feet of visitor space for humans and hundreds of gallons of tank space for the space’s marine occupants, including a 350,000-gallon warm-water tank that will host larger species, like sharks.

Smaller tanks and “dynamic exhibits,” said a release from LMN Architects, “will incorporate new technologies to collectively communicate the one-world ocean conservation story.”

An event space for up to 200 people will have a view of the tank, too.

The expansion is slated for completion in 2023, right in line with other central waterfront development and related projects.

Seattle Aquarium

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