Selby Gardens announces its Largest Gift in Selby Gardens’ History- $5 Million to Fund the Visionary SKY GARDEN in the new master plan for the institution

January 28, 2019

Media Contact:
Lynn H. Bates, APR, CPRC
VP for External Relations at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens lbates@selby.org (941) 366-5731 ext. 225

Selby Gardens announces its Largest Gift in Selby Gardens’ History- $5 Million to Fund the Visionary SKY GARDEN in the new master plan for the institution
With this gift $31.5 million [74%] for Phase One of the Master Site Plan have been raised

SARASOTA, Fla., January 28, 2019-Marie Selby Botanical Gardens (Selby Gardens), the world’s only botanical garden dedicated to the study, display and conservation of epiphytic plants, announces that as of today $31.5 million in gifts, 74 percent of the funds needed to implement the $42.5 million dollar phase one of the master plan have been secured.

Since the launch of the campaign on October 10, 2018, several new leadership gifts totaling nearly $10 million, have been made to Innovating a Greener Future- Living Inspiration for a Living Museum: The Campaign for Selby Gardens (The Campaign).

The significant progress attained toward the Phase One goal has been made possible today by a 5-million dollar gift by visionary Sarasota donors Drs. Joel and Gail Morrison Morganroth.

The centerpiece of Phase One of the Gardens’ new Master Site Plan is the Sky Garden that will bear their name. The Sky Garden is a vertical garden and visitor services building that will incorporate cutting-edge sustainability innovations and serve as an international model for green technology. Further, the Sky Garden will house a substantial storm-water management system and generate significant energy to power Phase One of the master plan, making it the first Net Positive Energy botanical garden complex in the world.

“Innovation is the cornerstone to a sustainable and promising future,” says Dr. Joel Morganroth. “Selby Gardens understands the value of innovation as is evident in their transformational Master Plan. With a greener sustainable future in mind, they are taking bold steps to preserve their precious collections while blazing forward with designs that will allow for more green space, energy efficiencies and extensive educational outreach at their 15-acre botanical garden. I admire their forward-thinking entrepreneurial approach and look forward to being a part of this evolution.”

“We are incredibly honored to receive this generous gift from Joel and Gail,” says Jennifer Rominiecki, Selby Gardens President and CEO. “Their belief in our project and passion for the innovation of the Master Plan reaffirms our belief that this is a vital chance to transform and realize the full potential of our beloved gardens, while also preserving our important history for generations to come.”

“Generosity and commitment are a part of every great accomplishment and are crucial in bringing this important project to fruition,” says Cornelia Matson, Selby Gardens Trustee and co-chair.

The goal for funding the overall 10-year Master Plan is $92 million, with $72 million to be directed toward capital costs and the balance to be directed towards our endowment and operational needs.

The fundraising campaign for this undertaking is co-chaired by Selby Gardens’ trustees and leadership donors Jean Weidner Goldstein, Cornelia Matson and Pauline Wamsler.

“I’m excited by the tremendous support this plan has received in a few short months,” says Pauline Wamsler, Vice Chair of the Selby Gardens Board of Trustees and co-chair of the campaign. “It is a testament to the strength of the project and the benefit it will bring to our community.”

Co-chair Jean Weidner Goldstein goes on to further say, “the Sarasota community is blessed to have so many wonderful patrons who support world-class cultural and natural amenities such as the Gardens. On behalf of Selby Gardens co-chairs and Trustees, we look forward to bringing this plan to fruition for the world to enjoy.”

Upon completion of the Master Plan the Gardens will add fifty percent more green space, safeguard and showcase the world’s best scientifically documented collections of orchids and bromeliads, accommodate our rapidly growing visitor base, and connect underserved families and children in the region to nature and Selby Gardens.

For more information on The Campaign, visit selby.org

About Selby Gardens’ Master Plan

The three-phase master site plan will increase the botanical garden’s green space by 50 percent, protect Selby Gardens’ scientific collections, which are the best of its kind in the world, from future sea level rise and allow for expanded educational outreach. Furthermore, upon completion of the master plan, Selby Gardens will have the only botanical garden complex in the world boasting a Net Positive energy rating– meaning the buildings will generate more energy than they consume. The Living Building Challenge, a green building certification program and sustainable design framework administered by the International Living Futures Institute, awards the Net Positive Energy rating.Contingent upon fundraising, zoning and permitting, the Gardens aims to break ground on the first phase in late 2019.

The Sky Garden, bearing the name of Drs. Joel and Gail Morrison Morganroth, will be a vertical garden and visitor services building that will incorporate cutting-edge sustainability innovations and serve as an international model for green technology. Further, the Sky Garden will house a substantial storm-water management system and generate significant energy to power phase one of the master plan, making it the first Net Positive Energy botanical garden complex in the world. It will include green walls and roofs to instill beauty and create shade, including charging facilities for electric vehicles and an advanced solar field structure. The solar field structure will not only provide electricity in excess of what is required to supply phase one’s energy needs but it will also act as shade and as an element of the storm water collection facility. The Sky Garden will also house parking, retail space and a destination restaurant. The rooftop restaurant, which will be supplied by an adjacent urban food garden, will be certified as the world’s first Net Positive Restaurant, and will be operated by another leadership donor, Michael’s on East. A significant percentage of the restaurant’s proceeds will benefit Selby Gardens. These building systems will provide educational lessons about water quality, green technology and solar power to visitors thanks to the Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation.

The first phase will also include the Jean Goldstein Welcome Center, which will be adjacent to the Steinwachs Family Plant Research Center, a building that will house the Elaine Nicpon Marieb Herbarium and Laboratory and Nathalie McCulloch Research Library.

A new greenhouse complex, a learning pavilion and improved, more intuitive, circuitous routes throughout the property round out the remaining phases of the plan. Palm Avenue will be converted to a pedestrian-only thoroughfare, showcasing the historic Augusta Block it is known for, which visitors will be able to admire safely with the improved layout.

Additionally, as Selby Gardens prepares for its sustainable future, the institution will responsibly preserve and steward the historical elements of the property. This includes a significant renovation of the Selby House, a recent recipient of local historical designation, thanks to support from the William G. and Marie Selby Foundation. Selby Gardens has planned a complete renovation of the Payne Mansion, home to the Museum of Botany & the Arts since 1979. The Mansion is on the National Register of Historic Places and is a recipient of the local historical designation by the City of Sarasota.

The master site plan has been guided by the international landscape architecture studio OLIN, buildings architecture firm Overland Partners and civil engineers Kimley Horn. Willis Smith Construction is the construction manager for the project.

 

Contributors to the Campaign as of January 28, 2019

Visionary Donors

Drs. Joel and Gail Morrison Morganroth

Leadership Contributors to the Campaign

Amicus Foundation

Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation

Norbert P. and Ann Winslow Donelly

Drs. Andrew and Judith Economos

The Gardener Foundation

Jean Weidner Goldstein and the late Alfred R. Goldstein

Marcy and Michael Klein

Beverly L. Koski

Ernest R. Kretzmer

Dr. and Mrs. Carlyle A. Luer

The Elaine Nicpon Marieb Charitable Foundation

Katherine and Frank Martucci

Cornelia and Richard Matson

William and Marianne McComb of the McComb Family Foundation

Nathalie McCulloch

Michael’s On East

Carol Miller and Virginia Miller

Michelle and Jonathan Mitchell of the Mitchell Family Foundation

Keith and Linda Monda

The Estate of Donna Valley Russell

The William G. and Marie Selby Foundation

Zuheir and Susan Sofia

Steinwachs Family Foundation

The Stone Foundation

Joseph Strosnik

Hobart and Janis Swan

Pauline Wamsler and David J. Sales

The State of Florida, Division of Economic Opportunity

Additional supporters

Beverly and Bob Bartner

Bob and Willa Bernhard

Betsy and Doug Elder

Toni and John Gartner

Toni and Charlie Mueller

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About Marie Selby Botanical Gardens

Marie Selby Botanical Gardens is the only botanical garden in the world dedicated to the display and study of epiphytic orchids, bromeliads, gesneriads and ferns and other tropical plants with a focus on botany, horticulture and environmental education. Marie Selby Botanical Gardens, 900 S. Palm Ave., Sarasota, is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily except Christmas. Regular admission is $20 and $10 children ages 4-17; members and children 3 and under enter free. Contact us at (941) 366-5731 or selby.org. Get social with us on Facebook, Instagram and more by searching @selbygardens or visit www.selby.org for more information.

 

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