The ground breaking for Branson’s newest attraction, the “Aquarium At The Boardwalk” came within hours of the Branson Board of Aldermen’s final approval of the Tax Increment Financing (TIF) for the Aquarium. The Board unanimously approved the project during its first reading at their Feb. 12 meeting. Its final approval came as they approved its second reading as part of the Consent Agenda at their Feb. 26 meeting. The ground breaking took place at 11 a.m. on Feb. 27, at the site of the aquarium, in the northwest corner of the Grand Palace property, at the corner of Glory Road and Highway 76.
Branson City Administrator and Mayor Express Excitement
Branson City Administrator Stan Dobbins, and Branson Mayor, Karen Best were among the many dignitaries attending the ground breaking. “We are excited about this opportunity to see an iconic location along Highway 76 be brought back to life. This project and TIF fits in line with Branson family values, will spur economic growth across the City, and will do what TIF’s are meant to do – develop partnerships with developers with no risks to the City or its residents,” said City Administrator Stan Dobbins.
Mayor Karen Best said, “Today’s a very exciting day for Branson. We have worked very hard to bring year round jobs to the area. That’s very important for our economic development and the sustainability of the community.” Jeff Seifried, CEO, Branson CVB, said “What an exciting and historic day for Branson as Kuvera Partners breaks ground for a great new attraction, the Aquarium On The Boardwalk. It couldn’t be more of a right project for Branson and its millions of visitors.”
Aquarium At The Board Walk Will Focus on Fish and Fun
The 46,000 square foot $51 million Aquarium is being built by Kuvera Partners, through its affiliated entity, Branson Entertainment Center – Branson, LLC. “The Aquarium at the Boardwalk will be focused on fish and fun. Right at the start, we’re creating the atmosphere of a classic boardwalk and then taking you under the sea to explore and play and get great photos, along with enjoying spectacular views of a wide variety of sea animals,” said Tej Sundar, a Kuvera Partner
Construction to Start Within Days With Anticipated Opening Spring-Summer 2020
The Aquarium’s website describes some of the things visitors will be able to enjoy. Among them is the “Mermaid Palace.. a magical underwater Palace where heroic Mermaids safeguard the sea…Their lovely fortress has been designed for visitors to enjoy tales of the deep with a real live mermaid. Plus, take in the mesmerizing sight of schooling fish, seahorses, and butterfly fish.” Another is the “Jelly Fish Climber and Aquarium Slide” where youngsters get to scale a replica of the ocean’s giant jellyfish – a “Sea Nettle!” They’ll enjoy “self-directed adventures inside a 14-foot, net-enclosed climber and “whoosh down the slide through a swarm of spiny Lion fish!” Other planned activities include the “Journey Through The Waters Tunnel,” “Amazing Rays,” a “Touch Pool,” a “Coral Reef,” and more.
“We are really excited about this project and are thankful to the Branson community for this opportunity. We will have equipment on property within a few days and will start moving dirt. If all goes as we plan, guests will be enjoying the fun and excitement of the “Aquarium On The Boardwalk” in the Spring-Summer of 2020,” Sundar added.