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Dinosaurs on display as Museum of Surrey reopens with new expansion

The Museum of Surrey reopened on Saturday with a pre-historic display that proved a big hit with the younger crowd. .
The Museum of Surrey reopened on Saturday with a pre-historic display that proved a big hit with the younger crowd. . Global News

It’s been years in the making, but a major expansion of Surrey’s main civic museum is now complete.

The Museum of Surrey held its grand re-opening on Saturday, celebrating a nearly $16-million upgrade that includes additions to the museum’s main building, a tripling in size of the Kids Explore Zone and a new Indigenous Hall.

READ MORE: 13 metre-long ‘sea monster’ arrives at UBC atrium

“It feels amazing. We’ve been working non-stop day and night for weeks on end,” said museum manager Lynn Saffery.

“The museum isn’t completely done; we still have lots of work to do, but we are ready for the people of Surrey and the people who are visiting Surrey, too.”

Originally opened in 2005 as the Surrey Museum, officials quickly found it it wasn’t large enough for the city’s rapidly growing young population.

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WATCH: Surrey Museum moves ahead with expansion

Surrey Museum moves ahead with expansion
Surrey Museum moves ahead with expansion

The newly expanded facility reopened to lineups Saturday morning, and one exhibit in particular was a major hit with the younger crowd: dinosaurs.

“Dinosaurs Unearthed,” which runs until March 31, includes animatronic dinosaur displays — some feathered — skeletons and hands-on fossils.

Located at 17710 56A Ave., the facility shares a neighbourhood with several other museums and civic assets, including the Fraser Valley Heritage Railway, a vintage truck museum, the Surrey Archives and the Cloverdale Library.

READ MORE: Dinosaur skull discovery a first in B.C.

“Our idea is this becomes a cultural campus that is a focal point for people in the are and that people will visit from around the world,” said Saffery.

The City of Surrey contributed nearly $11 million of the total costs for the expansion, with the federal government contributing about $5 million.