Gulf Coast Exploreum Science Center of Mobile,AL

New Partnership with City


May 2015


Download the official press release here in PDF format: ExploreumCityPressRelease



New lease agreement deeds building to the City and insures science education in the region


For immediate release

Contact: Jan McKay:

May 5, 2015; Mobile, Alabama — The Board of Trustees of the Gulf Coast Exploreum Science Center has announced that its mission of providing interactive STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) exhibits and educational programming for regional schools, the public, and area visitors has been further strengthened through a new mutually beneficial agreement with the City of Mobile.

The agreement, which was negotiated by the Exploreum’s Board of Trustees and representatives from the City of Mobile, will transfer ownership of the privately funded building that currently houses the science center at 65 Government Street in downtown Mobile from the non-profit organization to the City. Before the agreement, the City only maintained ownership of the land. With the new agreement, the City assumes ownership of the building which includes the IMAX Dome theatre as well as the attached historic fire station, giving Mobile a new capital asset valued at approximately $15 million in return for a favorable lease agreement that will free up the Exploreum’s short-term capital funds and enable it to invest more in education, family events, and exhibitions.

The new agreement also received support from local businesses and industries who are current investors in the Exploreum including AM/NS Calvert and Evonik, as well as other corporate and private donors that recognize the importance of STEM programming to the area’s continued growth and economic success.

“Much of our area’s economic success is the result of private sector and public sector partnerships,” said David Trent of Airbus Engineering and current President of the Exploreum Board of Trustees. “The Exploreum receives incredible ongoing support from businesses and industries like Airbus. These, coupled with the philanthropy we receive from local citizen donors, are further strengthened and leveraged with public support. Having the City’s continued involvement with a community asset like the Exploreum sends a great message that Mobile understands the importance of STEM education and that it’s incredibly important for keeping and attracting new technologically advanced industries.”

“Our Board and many community stakeholders appreciate the City’s willingness to keep our partnership strong and lasting,” added Jan McKay, Executive Director of the Exploreum. “While the Board and staff will continue to work with existing and new donors to bring the quality exhibits and programming necessary to meet the Exploreum’ s mission, I believe that this is the best solution for the City, the Exploreum, and the community.  All will gain by this arrangement, and I want to thank Mayor Sandy Stimpson, his staff, and the City Council for the many hours of work that were involved to come up with a viable solution that is truly a win-win for the community.”

“The Exploreum plays a significant role in the education and arts communities in Mobile, serving as one of our downtown pillars and contributing to the quality of life for our citizens, said Mayor Sandy Stimpson. “This new agreement will strengthen the Exploreum for years to come while at the same time ensuring that our public dollars are invested wisely. Put simply: We are a better Mobile with a more vibrant Exploreum, and this agreement will help us accomplish that.”

Incorporated in 1978, the Gulf Coast Exploreum Science Center is a non-profit organization that is a catalyst for science literacy, a tourist attraction, and a presenter of STEM oriented programming and exhibits. It has been recognized as one of the top tourism attractions for the State of Alabama and listed among the top science centers in the country. The Exploreum serves more than 25,000 school children and has an annual average attendance of

150,000 visitors from a region ranging from Alabama and Mississippi to northwest Florida.

The Gulf Coast Exploreum Science Center is located at 65 Government Street, Mobile, Alabama 36602.