Commissioned by the Newport Harbor Nautical Museum, in the historic Balboa Fun Zone, ExplorOcean is a one-of-a-kind educational experience slated for completion in 2018. The 33,600-square-foot museum is an educational attraction dedicated to oceanic exploration. The design concept elevates the nature of the area and provides a clean, safe and exciting family destination.
"The nautically inspired design does not rely on themes or replication, but rather abstractions inspired by ocean exploration," says LPA Senior Designer Rick D'Amato. "The building is designed to fit comfortably along the water's edge while also becoming a new icon for the Balboa Peninsula."
The venue's focus celebrates past explorers and deep sea discovery, while also inspiring the next generation of voyagers. Features will include a Main Gallery, 4D Theater, Ocean Status Center, Kids Interactive Zone, Ocean Simulators, Temporary Exhibit Space, restaurant and a third-story, open air event deck with views of Newport Harbor. Sustainable features include a 12,000-square-foot photovoltaic array, an efficient exterior building envelope with Low-E glazing, a living wall-with more than 20,000 square feet of landscape-irrigated by rainwater harvesting, onsite stormwater management for every drop of water that hits the site, use of dual-flush and low-flow fixtures to reduce water use by 40 percent, solar controls, natural ventilation and much more. These elements combine to help ExplorOcean achieve LEED Platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.