Master Interpretive Plan Approved

Master Interpretive Plan Approved

For Immediate Release

Master Interpretive Plan Approved

Valdez, Alaska, October 25, 2016 – On Thursday, October 20th, the Board of Directors of the Valdez Museum and Historical Archive approved the final draft of a Master Interpretive Plan (MIP). The plan was crafted with the assistance of the Portland, Oregon, firm Alchemy of Design, specialists in the fields of museum organization, development, and exhibit design.

The Master Interpretive Plan is the first step in the pre-planning process that will guide the Valdez Museum’s future. The MIP will help define the museum’s interpretive needs, which will then determine the feasibility of building a new facility, or refurbishing and/or expanding an existing building. This plan serves as a tool in defining what and how the museum will communicate to visitors. It shapes the major themes that will bring visitors to its doors again and again over the years. It outlines the facilities needed to support museum collections and best enable the staff to effectively operate the museum in a sustainable and efficient manner. It imagines a dynamic institution at the heart of the community—one in which the Valdez Museum and Historical Archive shares the stories of people and place that engage both area residents and visitors from afar.

In 2015, the MIP development team met with Valdez Museum board and staff, and community stakeholders to determine audience needs and wants for a new or expanded museum facility, identify the museum’s strengths and weaknesses, and identify key messages to be explored within the museum’s exhibits and public programs. The MIP was presented to the City Council on August 23rd, 2016, presenting the project team’s findings and recommendations regarding the museum’s space needs, cost estimates, and outlining several site options for the museum’s continued growth and sustainability.

With the completion of the MIP, the Valdez Museum and Historical Archive is well positioned to commission an architectural feasibility study based on the facilities needs identified and outlined in the plan. Feasibility studies begin with site evaluation and analysis, take into account building code and zoning, and develop budgets that meet the building programming needs and desired aesthetic qualities. In addition, the plan is intended to serve as a component in the larger city-wide planning process, providing baseline information relevant to the role the museum plays in Valdez as the city moves forward in visioning for the future.

About the Valdez Museum:

The Valdez Museum & Historical Archive is an active place. We bring the stories of our community’s history alive through our programs and activities. Please come visit us at our two locations: The Valdez Museum in the heart of downtown at 217 Egan Drive and the Remembering Old Valdez Exhibit on the waterfront at 436 S. Hazelet.

Contact: Patricia Relay – Tel: 907 835 2764 Email:


Download the Master Interpretive Plan here.