Last week we endorsed Open Platform's proposal to build a free outdoor cultural facility and park as a great alternative to having a $12-pay-to-see-but-for-the-Love-of-GOD-don't-TOUCH glass museum at the Seattle Center.

Lorna Jordan, making magic in Lynnwood
  • Lorna Jordan, making magic in Lynnwood
But one issue we didn't cover in great detail in the article is funding. Open Platform, like most of the other projects, has none (they also didn't have a year to hone their proposal). This is a huge hurdle. Proposals will be judged by a group of panelists on three main criteria: their ability to fund themselves, their ability to generate revenue for the Seattle Center, and their perceived community benefit.


Open Platform already nails two of the three criteria: They want to partner with KEXP, which means KEXP would pay "market rent" (as their proposal states) to Seattle Center for use of the Arcade Pavilion. The community benefit this project offers includes an evolving outdoor park and dedicated performance space.

So how much will this proposal cost and how will they fund it? "We're estimating around three million to get it up and running," says Lorna Jordan, one of the brains behind Open Platform. "Then there would be operating costs. We're still working with consultants to get an idea of how much that would be."

Jordan says that the group has talked to Jim Kelly from 4Culture about funding opportunities. "Since we're creating a cultural facility, we're eligible for their cultural facility grant," Jordan explains. "The state and the [National Endowment for the Arts] have similar funding opportunities."

If you want to know more about Open Platform—or any of the other eight projects—tomorrow's your chance. The Center House at Seattle Center is hosting an open house tomorrow from 4:30 to 6:00 p.m. with all of the proposers, who'll be on hand to pitch their projects and answer questions.

Then at 6:00 p.m., the real fun begins: the panel tasked with judging all nine projects is hosting the only public meeting in this process to gather input on what should be done with the Fun Forest site.

To recap:

Tomorrow, July 7
Center House at the Seattle Center
Open house from 4:30 to 6:00 p.m., public meeting from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.

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It's supposed to be 90 degrees and sunny tomorrow. I know. But it's supposed to be nice on Thursday, too, and this is the only chance you've got to testify.

More on all the proposals here.