To Russia with love

The world’s tallest cylindrical aquarium, housing an elevator ride and walk-through tunnel, recently debuted at the new Oceania Mall in Moscow, Russia. The 24-meter-tall acrylic aquarium, designed and built by locally based International Concept Management (ICM), is now the focal point for the state-of-the-art shopping center in Russia’s capital city. Photo special to the Sentinel.

There are more than 3,200 artificial corals installed in the tank to create a realistic environment for the thousands of aquatic animals living inside. The elevator, which is the tallest hydraulic elevator in the world, brings guests face to face with 50 different species of sharks, rays and fish. Photo special to the Sentinel.

Grand Junction-based International Concept Management just finished designing and installing the world’s tallest cylindrical aquarium and hydraulic elevator in Moscow, Russia.

The aquarium is the focal point inside Moscow’s Oceania Mall, standing 78 feet tall and 32 feet wide.

Shoppers can ride the elevator to the top of the aquarium and exit through an acrylic tunnel that enhances the underwater effect, ICM Marketing Director Elizabeth Reynolds said.

The state-of-the-art filtration and life support systems are located beneath the aquarium and use a modular design that allows any component to be individually adjusted.

There are more than 3,200 artificial corals that create a realistic environment for the 50 different species of sharks, rays, and fish living inside.

Reynolds said this particular project was technically challenging to build because of its record-setting size.

“Our architectural designers were on-site in Russia since they literally had to move the aquarium into the mall that had already been built,” Reynolds said.

The acrylic was shipped in 56 pieces to Moscow from Reynolds Polymer Technology, Inc. in Grand Junction.

Shipping acrylic is a temperature-sensitive process that was successful despite it being winter in Moscow, Reynolds explained.

The pieces were bonded together in specifically built technical rooms and then lifted into place by the largest crane in Russia.

It took about 15 months to complete the aquarium, which opened last month.

ICM staff will remain in Russia for at least six months to train local staff on how to maintain and operate the aquarium.

Reynolds said ICM has several international projects under construction in Chile and China, but Coloradans will be most interested in the 160,000-gallon saltwater aquarium that will installed at the new Scheels Sporting Goods store in Johnstown on the Front Range. The store is expected to open in September 2017.

Roger Reynolds, who founded Reynolds Polymer, started ICM in 1995 to meet the growing international demands of aquarium designs and construction.

It now has offices in Brazil, Thailand, Russia and Hong Kong, but its international headquarters is still in Grand Junction.

ICM subcontracts with Reynolds Polymer for its acrylic needs, said Elizabeth Reynolds.

More information about ICM’s products and services can be found at


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