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The National Aquarium in Washington to Close

(Courtesy: MGN Online/National Geographic Society)

(Courtesy: MGN Online/National Geographic Society)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The National Aquarium says it will close its Washington branch in the fall.

Officials announced Thursday that renovations at the Department of Commerce building that the aquarium has called home since 1932 make the move necessary.

Aquarium officials say they must leave by March 2014, but the aquarium will close Sept. 30 and begin moving the 1,500 animals housed there to the National Aquarium in Baltimore and other facilities.

The National Aquarium, Washington, DC, was established in 1873 and opened in 1885. The aquarium’s board is exploring ways to maintain a presence in Washington.

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