Loveland Living Planet Aquarium (LLPA) have announced plans for a new Science Learning Campus alongside their current Draper-based facility.
The development includes an 80,000 square foot multi-functional Science Learning Center which will be connected to the original building via an enclosed breezeway. The exterior has been designed to mirror the Wasatch Mountains East of LLPA.
Guests will be able to immerse themselves and learn through STEM-based classrooms. Designed for all ages, including college students, facilities include Science Summer Camp programs and High-Tech labs equipped for marine biology, genetics, chemistry and biology studies. There will also be animal and science interactive exhibits, an incubator entrepreneur center, and a five-story rainforest habitat with an Endangered Species Conservation Center for the Aquarium’s clouded leopards, toucans, and the other animals within the LLPA’s Survival Plan program.
Brent Andersen, LLPA Founder and CEO, said that the Science Learning Campus will “provide more opportunities to engage students and inspire future scientists of the world”. The Aquarium is now home to more than 4,500 animals and 550 species, and is set to welcome their 3 millionth visitor at some point in the near future.
The facility already provides extensive educational offerings to the community – the science based learning programs reach almost 83,000 students in Utah every year, as well as another 81,000 students who come to the Aquarium with school trips.
“This expansion is the next logical step in our mission to inspire people to explore, discover and learn about earth’s ecosystems, and to understand that it is really just one global ecosystem, our Living Planet.”
LLPA Board Member Jim Loveland‘s family has been involved with LLPA since the 2007, and watched as the facility outgrew it’s previous locations. He says “when the Draper site expansion plans were shared with us, we decided this was something that would bring a great deal of joy to us and thousands of others. That is why we made a lead gift to catalyze funding for the current facility and it is also why we are now supporting the expansion and the creation of the Science Learning Center.”
Costing an estimated $21 million in total, the project has been kickstarted by a generous $1 million donation from the Loveland Family Foundation, and construction is expected to begin this Autumn.