Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has ordered the construction of South Asias biggest multi-level aquarium in Mumbai.
Mr. Thackeray issued directives on Monday to the State tourism department officials asking them to scale up the size of the project to match or beat Sea Life Bangkok Ocean World in Thailand, the largest multi-level aquarium in South Asia. It covers 1.10 lakh sq. ft. area and hundreds of species are displayed under 50 lakh litres of water.
The Sea Life Bangkok Ocean World provides entertainment and education to visitors. Through formal educational programmes, the aquarium aims to promote an appreciation of the aquatic environment.
The Chief Minister has directed officials to present the proposal to him at the earliest and shortlist a location for the aquarium either in south Mumbai or the suburbs, officials said.
Mr. Thackeray told officials that Mumbai is a city of international standards and new attractions would have to be developed to woo tourists. The State government has already developed a cruise terminal of global standards and having an aquarium would add another great landmark to citys long list of tourists attractions, he told the officials.
He said we have to start looking at Mumbai in a different light and having an aquarium of international standard is the first step in that direction, said a senior official of the State tourism department. Mr. Thackeray also discussed the possibility of starting a sea world and a tourism street in Mumbai, and promoting flamingo tourism and night safari in Sanjay Gandhi National Park, senior officials said.
After being sworn in as the Chief Minister last week, Mr. Thackeray had said Mumbai would be a top priority for him. I have a lot of thoughts floating in my head on what to do with Mumbai, he had said. Senior officials said Mr. Thackeray also discussed the possibility of developing the coastline of the State.
In his first Cabinet meeting, Mr. Thackeray had allotted 600 crore for development of forts in the State.