Shivaji Maharaj memorial and proposed oceanarium: East-side view from Nariman Point
Shivaji Maharaj memorial and proposed oceanarium: East-side view from Nariman Point

Proposal for Arabian Sea Oceanarium

The student thesis by 24-year-old architect Anirudha.S.Adivarekar revolves around creating a place that marine life could call home

The proposal by the student embodies the balance between marine habitats and ecosystems by using Bio-mimicry in its design, explores experiment and recreational aspects of human nature and represents Shivaji Maharaj by creating a bold and imaginative landmark in Mumbai, daring to explore the limitless potential of our people.

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1. Shivaji Memorial site area: 1,59,600 (15.96 ha) [recreational plot]
2. Proposed oceanarium campus site area: 30,621m²
o Building built-up area: 15,131m²
o Ancillary building services area: 12,500m²
3. Proposed Oceanarium campus site setback: Entire area surrounding Shivaji Memorial site will have 500m setback from 13m height RCC Janjira fort style wall. The oceanarium campus site will be 6m setback from south and west side; 12m setback north and east side from 13m height RCC Janjira fort style wall.
4. Proposed site general description as per State Government: The site is located in the Arabian Sea supported on pile foundation resting on rocks. Since the whole recreational plot is covered in rock, excavation for basement is not allowed by the state government.
5. Sustainability Economics: Central government - small percentage possible; major financing by the State Government.
6. Structural considerations: Self-weight occupants load, cyclone earthquake (seismic load), Tsunami, RCC pile foundation and RCC M45 composite section and grid beam.
7. Facilities for reaching the proposed Oceanarium: Total visitors per day at 6,000 pax. As per proposed traffic plan, 10 electric passenger ferry with 150 carrying capacity per hour from 10.00am to 6pm will be operating from Nariman Point and Gateway of India. From Gateway of India sea route distance is 12km and from Nariman Point it is 3.5km.


• What issue/purpose/cause does your thesis project serve?
The purpose of building an Oceanarium is to help reproduction of marine life, as open oceans and coastal sites are losing oxygen and low-oxygen zones are spreading due to rising ocean temperatures and nutrient pollution from fertilizers and human sewage. The project will house sea creatures that live in the epipelagic zone of the sea coast along the Western coast of India, the Malabar, the Gulf of Khambhat and Lakshadweep islands, situated in the Arabian Sea. This is where over 80% of the fish variety of India comes from, which are endangered due to long-term over-fishing.

The purpose of the thesis project is also to hold a Marine DNA research laboratory, specialising in creating a vaccine for cancer, HIV/AIDS and age-related illnesses in humans, sperm test-tube laboratory for the reproduction of marine species. After the sea creature is dead, it is brought to the Oceanarium taxidermy Laboratory for preservation by stuffing or mounting, plastination, artificial mounting, preservation marine species in glycerol/ethanol/formalin and skeleton preservation for display and study purposes.

The project will provide job opportunities for 300 people of different capabilities, including for physically challenged people. Planning is done taking into account accessibility for physically challenged staff and visitors with elevators with carrying capacity of 36-64 persons. Escalators and ramps will be provided in adequate slopes and space for queues, all around the aquariums for easy movement. Interior exhibit spaces range from grand to intimate, giving spectators an array of diverse environments and moods.

The concept behind the project was the search of knowledge, the search to discover more about the ocean, a point from where life originated. The project concept includes bio-mimicry of ocean habitat, where table corals and marine rocks gather together to create a nest for thousands of marine species (which become the main body form of the structure). Eels create pits inside coral or marine rock hiding from predators and only the face can be seen (which become one of the main elements of the main body structure). Mollusca lives beside a marine rock to eat algae (become one of the elements of structure). While stingray and baby shark surround the nest or hide inside the sand (stingray and baby shark become one of the elements of structure).

As the facility will get a large number of visitors, special attention was given to the smooth movement of people - visitors as well as staff and segregation of services. Attention is paid so that there is segregation of various movements.

A.  For visitors
When visitors arrive from the passenger ferry towards visitor jetty, they will go to the batch (II) entrance foyer (waiting area) with the help of an electric cart or electric bus. Electric vehicles move forward towards batch (I) entrance foyer for service check out and ticket counter. Visitors move towards the main foyer, which is the central space, where visitors choose which zone they would like to explore, such as the main display zone, recreational zone or educational programs.

There is separate foyer for exit point; it has three main display zones. Buruj is the second exit point for the visitor, who completes the main display zone and recreational zone adjoining with 4D sky motion theatre and Aqua gift shop. Both the exit points take the visitors at Buruj, having lifts towards the first floor of visitor jetty garden, to watch the 360-degree view. There is a ramp going towards the ground floor of visitor jetty, for final exit. Special attention is given to vertical movements with help of escalators, stairs, lifts and ramps. Fire exits are provided every 30m.

B.  For Service & Supporting Staff
Staff will work in two batches, morning and night shift: 100 staff per batch will arrive from staff passenger ferry towards service jetty. They will be transferred in an electric bus and move towards batch (I) entrance foyer for checking. Then they go to the staff room for changing clothes and biometric checking in; 20 caretaker staff will stay in a caretaker space, divided into two batches of morning and night shift.

C.  Transportation of Marine Species & Equipment
Marine species and equipment are brought from service boat towards service jetty. Species or equipment is first loaded in-service truck and unloaded on the dock; forklift will carry marine species or equipment towards Oceanarium, with the help of service staff and service elevator with carrying capacity of 2,500kg towards destination display. But if marine species are huge in scale, the service truck will directly transport towards hydro scissor lift with carrying capacity 10-20 tons, which is located on the west and south side in the recreational zone, where large marine mammals, fishes will be displayed.

D.  Transportation of Goods
Food supply for cafeteria and marine species is brought from service boat via service jetty, once a week when Oceanarium is closed.

o The exhibition concept offering all visitors a sensuous and captivating experience of life journey under the water, is based on various themes such as Jim Corbett forest, Elephanta Caves, the tropical Oceanarium and coral reef – sea rainforest.
o The Oceanarium focuses all marine aquatic life, from cold and warm waters, salt water, etc. In total, the Oceanarium contains approx. 32,555,614 litres of water and 278 aquarium display tanks. It houses over 224 different species of fish and creatures that can be found in three coasts - Malabar, the gulf of Khambhat and Lakshadweep islands.
o For physically challenged staff and visitors, there will be elevators with carrying capacity of 36-64 persons. Escalator and ramps provided in adequate slopes and queues space, all around the aquariums, will enhance movement.. Interiors range from grand to intimate, giving the exhibit spaces an array of diverse environments and moods.
o 4D sky ocean motion theatre, aqua gift shop, Oceanarium Park consisting of swimming with dolphins and dugong, scuba diving with fish are part of the aquarium entertainment program. Seminar hall, class room, workshop are also part of the aquarium for educational programs. 
o A mixture of translucent glass roof, light, sound, advanced AV-technology, air conditioning; reduction of solar gain through moving louvers, will keep the temperature and humidity under control. South face vertical solar panels used to maintain building atmosphere, will help to cut down solar gain as well as create electricity.
o Projections, film, interactivity, graphics, illustrations and signs, are aimed at all age groups. This will ensure that every visitor, regardless of background or interests, has the best experience possible.
o Building safety features such as fire alarm systems, fire escapes staircase at every 30m distance, fire extinguisher, smoke detectors, sprinklers and biometric face recognition, etc will be used.

Anirudha.S.Adivarekar, born on 13 January 1995, completed his Bachelor's of Architecture from Pune University in 2018. He studied preschool and secondary school in RM Bhatt, Mumbai, and did his higher secondary at Bhavan's College Charni Road, Mumbai, where he achieved first prize in the Royal Australian Chemical Institute, Australia & Tata Chemical, India in 2011. He also achieved first prize in standard examination in Chemistry by Indian Association of Physics Teachers at XII level in 2012.

• To see the Oceanarium walkthrough on YouTube, type: Arabian Sea Oceanarium at Mumbai, or go to the link:



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