The bids are in for Mississippi Aquarium project

The bids are in for Mississippi Aquarium project

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - The bids for the Mississippi Aquarium project have been unsealed. The City of Gulfport has three proposals to consider.

The highest bid of $59 million came from Wharton-Smith: General Contractors. Thrash Commercial Contractors submitted a bid of $56 million, and Roy Anderson Corporation came in with the lowest bid of $52 million.

"The next step is to analyze the bids to confirm the lowest most responsive and responsible bidder. We are excited that the apparent low bidder is a local company who will utilize our local workforce," said aquarium President and CEO David Kimmel.

In October, Mississippi Aquarium officials pushed back the bid deadline to Nov. 16. Kimmel said the deadline was extended after several hurricanes hit the Southeast, putting pressure on the construction community.

Because of the extension, Kimmel said the aquarium may not open until late 2019 or early 2020.

City officials and members of the Gulfport Redevelopment Commission will start reviewing the bids immediately, and they expect to give the go ahead to proceed in January of 2018.

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