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25 Jan 2019

US$100m aquarium planned for Basel
BY Luke Cloherty

The aquarium will cost around US$100m (€88m, £76.7m) to build and is being backed by Zoo Basel

The aquarium will cost around US$100m (€88m, £76.7m) to build and is being backed by Zoo Basel
photo: Zoo Basel

A new 10,000sq m (107,639sq ft) aquarium is being slated for Basel, Switzerland, due to open in 2024.

The aquarium will cost around US$100m (€88m, £76.7m) to build and is being backed by Zoo Basel, which expects around 700,000 visitors through the doors each year.

Called Basel Ozeanium, it will display a diverse array of marine life, including sharks, rays, penguins, corals and deep sea dwellers, if it gets the necessary planning go-ahead. Creatures and plants will be sourced from sustainable catch, with jellyfish and corals coming from Zoo Basel’s breeding stocks.

Around 40 aquariums will make up the whole complex, on which construction is expected to begin in 2021.

Zurich-based architectural practice Boltshauser won the design competition for the building, which will be located in central Basel.

A Zoo Basel statement said: "We want to show the size of the ocean, its variety, its beauty but also its fragility and threat."

The aquarium has met some opposition, however, from local environmentalists who feel it could lead to animal suffering and weaken ecosystems. A local referendum is expected to take place in May this year on whether the aquarium should be built.



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