A Noah’s Ark replica is being constructed by a Florida man who aims to raise environmental awareness.
Rodolfo Almira is building a $1.5 million Noah’s Ark replica in Miami-Dade County that he hopes will one day become a museum and petting zoo.
Almira, who tells The Miami Herald the ark has “nothing to do with any specific religion,” says he is basing his ark on the instructions God gave to Noah in the Bible. That means Almira’s finished ark will be roughly 500 feet long and three stories tall.
Almira was inspired to build his ark after seeing animals struggling to find food and shelter in the havoc that followed Hurricane Katrina.
He has already raised around $300,000 in donations for the vessel, which he calls the “Hidden Ark.” That leaves a $1.2 million shortfall which Almira hopes to make up through crowdsourcing; a Kickstarter campaign is currently underway.
Almira has also enlisted the help of three friends to assist in building the ark. Work on the vessel began about six months ago on a five-acre lot.
Once finished, Almira says the ark is designed to accommodate a shop, a museum, and a small zoo with pigs, chickens, goats, and other small animals.
The ambitious project still faces legal hurdles. Almira and his colleagues have been given three separate $500 citations for lacking the correct permits and zoning approval but insist they will pay the fines as they come.
“This isn’t just for the community,” Almira said. “It’s for the entire world.”
Almira is not the first person to build a Noah’s Ark replica. In 2011, Christian ministry “Answers in Genesis” began construction of an ark that it hoped would become a $155 million religious theme park. The project is still ongoing.
What do you make of Rodolfo Almira’s plan for a Noah’s Ark replica? Let us know in the comments!