GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Mississippi Aquarium President and CEO David Kimmel and his team gave Gulfport city council members a glimpse at the current development of the project. Kimmel said he's beginning to look at resumes submitted online for jobs at the attraction.
"We've had 200 resumes submitted, and I read everyone, and sort them," Kimmel said.
Although he's getting an early start looking at job applicants, he admits most hiring will occur in the last six months before the aquarium opens.
"The majority of the staff will be coming in late 2018 and early 2019," Kimmel noted.
The aquarium expects to hire up to 70 full-time employees, and up to 50 part-time employees.
"We'll be going into specific jobs, and everyone will be advertised on the careers banner of our webpage, so people just have to watch and be patient."
Next month, contractors will be on site, overseeing construction, as the aquarium building itself will start to take shape, and come out of the ground. Kimmel said crews will also begin installing acrylic panels and windows for animal viewing in less than a year.
"Those are the windows that people see in. It's our tunnel that people see in, and big windows that are now under contract with a company out of Italy."
Kimmel said his team will soon begin picking out animals for the aquarium. And at some point next year, they'll design and build an animal quarantine facility with life support systems, to care for animals that get sick.
Kimmel said aquarium visitors will be allowed to leave and re-enter the site in an effort to encourage them to explore downtown Gulfport.