Seattle Public Schools and City of Seattle Announce One Roof Partnership as Potential Partner to Fulfill Shared Vision for New Memorial Stadium
SEATTLE (June 15, 2023) – Seattle Public Schools (SPS) Superintendent Dr. Brent Jones and Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell today announced that SPS and the City of Seattle will enter into discussions with One Roof Partnership – comprised of One Roof Foundation, Seattle Kraken and Oak View Group – as their potential partner in redeveloping and operating the aging Memorial Stadium at Seattle Center.
As one of two respondents to a recent SPS/City-issued Request for Proposals (RFP), One Roof Partnership proposes to build a new $150 million, 10,000-person capacity stadium to host student athletics, community events, arts and culture, with SPS continuing to own the facility and maintain priority use. The new stadium, which is being aimed for completion in 2026 (but no later than the end of 2027 per the RFP), will honor the stadium’s rich history and preserve Memorial Wall.
An advisory panel of SPS and City staff and community representatives reviewed the proposals and interviewed the prospective partners before recommending One Roof Partnership.
In making the announcement, Dr. Jones and Mayor Harrell said in a joint statement:
As longtime partners in serving students and the community, SPS and the City of Seattle are excited to enter into discussions with One Roof Partnership following our recent RFP process for the future of Memorial Stadium.
We have carefully considered the recommendation of the Memorial Stadium Advisory Panel, and agree that One Roof Partnership’s proposal makes a promising case for a potential partnership with a strong understanding of our values, a bold vision for an innovative new stadium, and which comes closest to meeting the requirements, goals and student-centered focus of the RFP.
As a potential partner, One Roof Partnership proposes a philanthropic funding approach, rather than a commercial enterprise. This unique approach best reflects community, with an emphasis on creating new opportunities for students and youth from all backgrounds, and has promise to be a great enhancement to the Seattle Center campus.
On behalf of SPS and the City, we want to express our sincere appreciation to both proposers for their interest in redeveloping and operating Memorial Stadium. Both proposals reflect the work of highly qualified and professional organizations that have demonstrated the ability to develop and operate major athletic facilities, and we are grateful for their time, effort, interest and participation in this process.
With this announcement, the parties will continue to discuss the proposal in hopes of a mutual agreement to be considered by the SPS Board of Directors and Seattle City Council later this year.
The potential of a partner provides for a significantly enhanced facility beyond what SPS could develop on its own, prioritizing a broad range of athletics, graduation ceremonies and other events for future generations. The City and community, too, would benefit from a new multi-use stadium, achieving some key goals of Seattle Center’s Century 21 Master Plan for an open and vibrant campus.
One Roof Partnership’s involvement will build upon significant public investment which includes $66.5 million approved by Seattle voters in last year’s SPS capital levy, as well as $4 million in state funding; $21 million from the City; plus another $19 million which the Seattle City Council expressed its intent to identify no later than 2026. In addition, One Roof Partnership has committed to lead efforts to raise the additional funding needed for the project.
Students and the community will have opportunities to provide input to help shape the planning and design through a community engagement process following partnership negotiation. The process, guided by best practices used in other successful civic and school projects, will be based on a strong commitment to equity, inclusion and access.
Work on creating a new stadium first began in 2017 with a partnership agreement between SPS and the City. In 2021 a Letter of Intent was signed outlining the shared goal of replacing the athletic stadium with a best-in-class, multi-use facility, which was followed by a Memorandum of Agreement signed in October 2022.
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