Gulfport unveils design of $65 million Mississippi Aquarium

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GULFPORT, Miss. (AP) – Officials are unveiling the proposed design for the Mississippi Aquarium, expected to open in early 2019 near the Gulfport Harbor.

The Sun Herald reports (http://bit.ly/1RkKjit ) the $65 million aquarium will be spread through four buildings, with an outdoor exhibit as the anchor.

Gulfport Mayor Billy Hewes says the city already has in hand the $40 million for construction, and he estimates another $20 million will be needed to acquire animals. Hewes says he hopes the money will come from the Legislature, where a bill is pending. He says it might arrive over time rather than in one lump sum.

Gov. Phil Bryant says he’s pledging $25,000 to the aquarium. He tells the Sun Herald the money might come from his campaign fund because he could not afford that size donation.

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