Kansas City council wants to build $75M saltwater aquarium

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Kansas City Zoo wants to build a $75 million saltwater aquarium.

The Kansas City Star reports that two city council members are proposing that the city contribute $7 million toward the 750,000 gallon aquarium. And zoo director Randy Wisthoff said Tuesday that the zoo has identified a little more than $20 million in potential private funding. Other funding would come from a 1/8th-cent sales tax in Jackson and Clay counties.

Plans call for the aquarium to open in late 2021, possibly in an area of the zoo that once housed bears. Wisthoff says officials would like it to include sharks and immersive features, such as tunnels, where visitors would be surrounded by sea life.

He says he wants the project to be a “destination, a major-league aquarium.”