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World Aquarium officially closed at City Museum

World Aquarium officially closed at City Museum

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ST. LOUIS  •  The World Aquarium, which opened last decade downtown inside of City Museum, has closed.

Leonard Sonnenschein, who operates the aquatic center, said it will take about two months to leave the facility. 

Sonnenschein indicated the facility will relocate, but didn't say where.  It has been closed since Sept. 8.  

"We will be making an announcement later about the next steps," Sonnenschein said. "We are closed to the public until the move is finished."

World Aquarium previously had been situated in the Hanley Industrial Court in St. Louis County.

The situation was expected. The World Aquarium leased its second floor space from City Museum. Entry required paying a separate admission fee.  

Earlier this year, Rick Erwin, the executive director of the City Museum, told the Post-Dispatch that the museum had asked the World Aquarium to vacate the space, citing problems collecting rent as well as complaints about the animals.

World Aquarium had been cited for a series of violations stemming from poor sanitation, murky water and unfed animals.

A re-inspection later found those problems had been addressed, and the museum remained open over the summer.  

Erwin said the aquarium has until Oct. 31, to totally vacate.  

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Nicholas J.C. Pistor is a reporter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

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