Newport, Oregon— The Oregon Coast Aquarium is set to begin a much anticipated renovation that will overhaul the Pinniped (Seal and Sea Lion) exhibit. The goal of the project is to increase the educational and overall guest experience while viewing the exhibit.
“The Pinniped Exhibit remodel is an exciting step in the implementation of the Aquarium’s strategic plan. We are committed to providing amazing and educational interactive experiences to our visitors’,” explained Carrie Lewis, CEO at the Oregon Coast Aquarium.
The major changes to the exhibit will be a 420% increase in the viewing area available to visitors and improvements to the animal husbandry infrastructure. Furthermore, the new exhibit will allow the potential of adding additional feeding times and showcasing animal training sessions.
The current Pinniped Exhibit layout has been in place since the opening of the Aquarium in 1992. The exhibit was originally designed to be as natural looking as possible. There were also no public feedings at that time. “As the number of visitors has increased over time it became apparent a larger viewing area was needed,” added Lewis. The new design will retain the current natural habitat look, while providing better viewing as well as covered seating.
Contractors will begin construction on the exhibit Monday, January 28th. The project is expected to take five to six weeks and is set to open prior to Spring Break. Video updates will be done weekly and available on both www.aquarium.org as well as the Oregon Coast Aquarium’s Facebook page.
Funding to make the project possible stemmed in large part from a $250,000 Tourism Facilities grant from the City of Newport. The remaining budget was raised through private donations.
The Oregon Coast Aquarium is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization located in Newport on the beautiful Oregon Coast. Our mission is to inspire the public to better understand, cherish and conserve marine and coastal ecosystems. The Aquarium is a member of the Association of Zoos & Aquariums. It has been named one of the top 10 aquariums in the U.S. Visit us at 2820 S.E. Ferry Slip Rd., Newport, OR. www.aquarium.org, 541-867-3474. Follow us on Facebook.com/OregonCoastAquarium for the latest updates.