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Texas State Aquarium plans expansion

An architect’s rendering of the new Wildlife Rescue Center proposed for property between the Texas State Aquarium and the USS Lexington Museum by the Bay on North Beach in Corpus Christi. Illustration courtesy of Texas State Aquarium

The Texas State Aquarium wants to expand again, this time raising money to build a wildlife research center. The $25 million facility would replace a current center on property leased form the Port of Christi. The lease expires in 2021.

The new wildlife center would be 25,000 square feet and built on aquarium-owned land between it and the USS Lexington Museum on the Bay. The property is currently used to off-load tour buses.

So far, the aquarium has $100,000 in seed money for the project. Donors will be needed to provide the rest, although officials also will seek some state funding.

The current Wildlife Rescue Center is located at 4230 Rincon Road in Corpus Christi. Formerly known as Second Chances Wildlife Rehabilitation Center, the facility recently completed a $45,000 expansion and rebranding. It rehabilitates and releases back into the wild shorebirds, raptors, sea turtles, and marine mammals. It is the only federally licensed facility of its kind in Texas.

The expansion includes new sea turtle tanks and a refurbished surgical suite with new technology for invasive operations.

The aquarium also recently opened its new Caribbean Journey exhibit, a $60 million expansion that more than doubled the venue’s size.

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