The Bellingham-Whatcom Chamber of Commerce and the Bellingham Whatcom County Tourism Bureau have both joined in support of the Northwest Discovery Project’s proposed Terr Aquarium, and have voted to encourage government funding.
Proponent Bob Goodwin has made presentations locally and in Olympia.
The Terr Aquarium, which is modeled after the Monterey Bay Aquarium, would serve the local community as a tourist attraction, drawing visitors from Seattle to Vancouver, B.C. and beyond. The world’s largest collection of giant Pacific octopuses, and river and sea otters,would be among the attractions. A virtual orca tour would give visitors the sensation of swimming inside the pod.
Six years from vision to reality, is the expected time frame; the next two years will be used to complete a marketing analysis, concept and funding plans. Northwest Discovery Project is seeking state funding to help with some of those immediate planning costs.
The Northwest Discovery Project operates the Squalicum Harbor Marine Life Center, which has more than 70,000 visitors a year.