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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Construction set to begin on Riverfront Park art, the Seeking Place

A 2020 design proposal shows the concept art of the Seeking Place by Sarah Thompson Moore in Riverfront Park in downtown Spokane. The installation will open Tuesday in Riverfront Park.   (Courtesy of Spokane Parks and Recreation)
By Julien A. Luebbers The Spokesman-Review

Construction for the Seeking Place, an art installation by Coeur d’Alene artist Sarah Thompson Moore, is expected to begin in the heart of Riverfront Park in August with completion slated for October.

The Spokane Park Board voted unanimously in September 2020 to approve Moore’s design, which is made primarily of perforated aluminum panels and basalt inspired by the basalt rock formations throughout the region.

Moore’s installation will reflect and dapple sunlight across the area, changing throughout the day. In the evening and at night, the sculpture will glow from inlaid LED lights, according to a presentation from the artist.

The installation will be about 40 feet by 23 feet, and 12 feet tall. It will be situated prominently on the open grassy area between the Howard Street Promenade and the U.S. Pavilion.

“The structure is going to really have, in my mind, a large impact,” said Spokane Parks and Recreation Director Garrett Jones.

The Park Board approved on July 14 a $67,000 contract with Terrabella in Spokane for site preparations. The board previously approved a contract with the artist, and fabrication is underway.

This contract was awarded the second time the park department solicited bids for the project. No one submitted bids the first time.

“The contracting market right now is very tight,” Jones said. “We were very fortunate to be able to get bids back” in the second round.

As a result of price increases in construction, materials and labor, the bid price is “a little higher” than the city had budgeted, said Berry Ellison, Parks and Recreation program director.

It is projected to cost $168,000, including site work and installation. The funding comes from a 1% allocation of the park’s $64 million redevelopment fund from 2014, set aside for public art as required by city ordinance.

Moore has “been fabricating for quite a while,” said Ellison. “The site work will go rather quickly.”

With work beginning in August, the project is set to last three months, with a mid-fall opening.

“We’re just excited to see it move forward and to be able to provide this great art piece to the community,” Jones said.