Detroit Zoo to 'break ice' on new penguin center

ROYAL OAK, Mich. (AP) - The Detroit Zoo plans to "break ice" on a center dedicated to penguins.

Officials are to take part in an "ice-breaking" ceremony Tuesday for the $29.5 million, 33,000-square-foot Polk Penguin Conservation Center at the zoo in suburban Royal Oak.

It marks the beginning of an 18-month construction period for the largest project the zoo has ever undertaken. The center will be built on a 2-acre site just inside the zoo's entrance and is scheduled to open late next year.

The outside of the center will have an iceberg-like look. The interior will include effects such as arctic blasts, waves and snow. It will include a penguin deep dive with views above and below a 326,000-gallon, 25-foot-deep tank.

It will be home to 80 penguins of four species.

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