Just in time for Shark Week, the Wildlife Conservation Society’s (WCS) marked the topping out of a new exhibit now under construction at the New York Aquarium in Coney Island, Ocean Wonders: Sharks!
The building—a 57, 500 square foot space slated to open in 2017 — will hold over 500,000 gallons of water in fully immersive and interactive exhibits and will feature sharks, rays, sea turtles and thousands of schooling fish, according to WCS.
“Ocean Wonders: Sharks! will be a conservation, education and economic engine for Coney Island and all of New York City,” said WCS Vice President and Director of the New York Aquarium Jon Forrest Dohlin. “We are building a new attraction for Coney Island that will bring hundreds of thousands of new visitors to the area.”
The exhibit’s main function will be to educate visitors about the remarkable ocean ecosystems that surround New York and the marine species that are found in local waters. According to WCS, the exhibit will feature the work of The New York Seascape, the aquarium’s conservation research and policy program.
“[The exhibit] will be a new iconic structure in Coney Island that brings the ocean to the Aquarium and the Aquarium to the ocean,” said Sue Chin, WCS vice president of planning and design and chief architect. “We are at a stage in the construction where visitors to Coney Island will clearly see there is a great new change coming to the community.”
The celebration on July 1 was a “topping out” that raised an American flag on the top floor of the building. WCS noted that with this exhibit, “visitors on the top floor will see far across the Atlantic Ocean and up and down the Coney Island Boardwalk.”
Photo by Julie Larsen Maher © WCS