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John Ball Zoo taking the first step toward bringing a world-class aquarium to West Michigan

John Ball Zoo entrance
John Ball Zoo

Zoo officials exploring locations in Kent and Muskegon counties.

John Ball Zoo officials have commissioned a feasibility study examining potential locations in Kent and Muskegon Counties for a large-scale aquarium featuring more than one million gallons of fresh and salt water exhibits. The layout featuring floor to ceiling viewing walls. A space where visitors pass through tunnels exploring a shark tank and living coral reef complete with Jellyfish.

The feasibility study focused on a geographical placement generating the greatest tourism success and community impact. The City of Muskegon’s location along the lakeshore and Grand Rapids’ along the Grand River have obvious ties to water ecosystems.

Both cities identify the aquarium as an anchor destination drawing millions of visitors to the region.

John Ball Zoo officials estimate the study could take up to one year to complete.

Patrick joined WGVU Public Media in December, 2008 after eight years of investigative reporting at Grand Rapids' WOOD-TV8 and three years at WYTV News Channel 33 in Youngstown, Ohio. As News and Public Affairs Director, Patrick manages our daily radio news operation and public interest television programming. An award-winning reporter, Patrick has won multiple Michigan Associated Press Best Reporter/Anchor awards and is a three-time Academy of Television Arts & Sciences EMMY Award winner with 14 nominations.