Kansas City to get $15M aquarium in Halls department store

KANSAS CITY, Missouri - Kansas City is getting an aquarium filled with everything from seahorses to sharks.

U.K.-based Merlin Entertainments Group announced Wednesday that it has reached a deal to open the $15-million attraction in part of Crown Center's Halls department store.

Construction will begin in May, and the aquarium is set to open in Spring 2012.

The attraction will occupy the first floor of Halls department store, as well as a section of the second floor. To accommodate the new attraction, Halls' men's department will relocate to space on the third level of the Crown Center Shops.

Plans call for it to provide visitors a glimpse of underwater life in the Missouri and Mississippi rivers, as well as the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. The centerpiece will be a tropical ocean tank with a walk-through underwater tunnel.

The company operates other aquariums in the U.S., Europe and Asia.

The company said that the Kansas City aquarium won't receive any tax incentives.

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