Holy mackerel: Henry Doorly Zoo aquarium gets a tuna-up

Holy mackerel: Henry Doorly Zoo aquarium gets a tuna-up
Rendering of the upcoming renovation of the Suzanne and Walter Scott Aquarium at the Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium. HENRY DOORLY ZOO & AQUARIUM

Renovations are coming to the Suzanne and Walter Scott Aquarium at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo, but don’t worry, you can still walk through an underwater tunnel and see the sharks.

The zoo is redesigning the aquarium’s facade; adding lighting, sound and a video board to the exhibits’ area; expanding and gussying up the Sea Turtle Cafe; and renovating a plaza, the zoo announced in a press release Thursday.

The aquarium will remain open during the work, which is scheduled to be completed in May 2020. Entrances and exits will change throughout the duration of the project.

On the new facade, “brushed stainless steel will simulate waves in the ocean, and cut metal panels will replicate coral,” the zoo said.

New lighting and sound will be designed to make the area come alive with realistic effects. Entrances will be better defined and include a 4-by-12-foot video board.

The zoo will add digital menu boards and a fifth concession window to the aquarium’s Sea Turtle Cafe.

Its plaza will get new tile, “and the underside of the canopy will be blue stainless steel that is dimpled to look like the surface of water.”

The zoo also plans to upgrade aquarium filters. And it will renovate restrooms and replace all the carpeting (not for the sea creatures, but for the people there to see the creatures).

Built in 1995, the aquarium has penguins, tropical fish, sea turtles, jelly fish, sharks and a 70-foot tunnel that allows for underwater viewing.

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