The New York Aquarium in Coney Island broke ground on Friday on a new shark exhibit officials hope will revitalize the institution.
The 57,000-square-foot facility called “Ocean Wonders: Sharks!” will hold 115 species including more than 45 different kinds of sharks, and guests will be able to view the creatures from all sides with the installation of a 360-degree coral reef tunnel.
Last year we reported that the aquarium had been all but destroyed by Superstorm Sandy, with repairs costing taxpayers approximately $65 million The new sharks exhibit carries a $157.1 million and is due to open sometime in 2016.
“You will be surrounded on all sides by not only sharks, but by schools of bright colored bony fish and the sort of beauty of the tropics that we all associate with diving,” Jon Forrest Dohlin, aquarium director and vice president of the Wildlife Conservation Society, told the Daily News.
The new building will be three-stories high and there will be a laboratory above the exhibit for children to learn more about the many species inside. On top will be a roof-deck overlooking the ocean.
In December, we wrote about the flashy “shimmer wall” that will wrap around the facility, on which neighbors can make a small donation to have their name digitally projected on one of the 33,000 aluminum tiles.