A commercial enterprise that never made money is about to become a non profit. The deal has been consummated and now fully owned by The Bay Institute Aquarium Foundation.
The $9.5 million deal means the 65,000-square-foot aquarium at Pier 39 will become a non profit center for education and research of the San Francisco Bay ecosystem. Impressive that a deal made in tough economic times, took a tourist trap and turned it into a community asset.
Its now a nature center dedicated to the conservation of the San Francisco Bay. The defunct commercial enterprise still attracts 600,000 visitors a year and now this population will support sustainable research to keep the bay a flourishing and healthy living resource for all of us.
The Aquarium is a huge endeavor, it is 50,000 square feet of exhibition space, including 300 feet of acrylic tunnels holding more than 700,000 gallons of filtered bay water. 20,000 marine life including sharks, bat rays and eels. You can take walking tour through the acrylic tunnels and see marine life all around you. Quite cool.
Partnering up with Monterrey Bay Aquarium, UC Davis and the California Department of Fish and Game, the aquarium will work on fish breeding and aging studies. New programs including a lecture series, marine workshops, tagging and tracking programs, exhibits, classes on pollution, freshwater diversions, fish contamination and species sustainability. This was supported by private loans, donations and municipal bond money......Thank you San Francisco.