Creating a realistic and interactive experience for visitors is perhaps one of the most challenging goals any aquarium faces, which is why a recent architectural competition generated so much excitement among aquarium enthusiasts from all over the world. At the competition, an architect revealed speculative plans for a “submerged island aquarium” in the 11th Street Basin of Long Island City.
The project laid out plans in which the aquarium would feature eight individual biome domes bisected by an “iceberg” at the island’s center. The biome domes would include ocean life representative of each of the four oceans and four seas, with the iceberg representative of both the North and South Poles.
The goal of the project’s designer was to create an experience for visitors in which they felt as they themselves had been submerged and could therefore feel more like a part of the environment rather than like a detached observer. Though the plans are purely speculative, the visual renderings of the design are unbelievably striking and showcase an impressive level of creativity on the part of the architect. It may be some time before a project such as this is ever seriously considered for development, but it’s hard to fault any aquarium enthusiast for hoping it is sooner rather than later.