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Wgtn aquarium given green light

Published: 10:39AM Thursday October 26, 2006 Source: One News

After close to a decade of debate a huge aquarium has been given the green light to be built on Wellington's south coast.

While supporters say it will show off marine life, opponents claim it will kill off pristine coastline and they may go to court to stop it.

Wellington Marine Conservation Trust expect the aquarium to be operating within two years and expect up to 200,000 visitors a year. It has taken eight years and two resource consent hearings.

Trust spokesman Victor Anderlini says the aquarium will give everybody a chance to a see what lives on the coast.

"So much of what lives there is being lost through our own ignorance and neglect," says Anderlini.

Artist Nic Dryden is also a big fan of Wellington's south coast.

But he has fought local development in the area, most recently fighting the aquarium - or 'fish zoo' as opponents likes to call it

For him the news it will go ahead was all bad

"This wild south coast actually defines our city's edge and a wonderful definition it is too - building a giant building on this site will just ruin it," says Dryden.

Despite the official green light opponents say this may not be the end of it. They will now consider taking their fight from here on the sands of the south coast, to the pavements of the CBD and the environment court.