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WESTMINSTER, CO-This Denver suburb has begun construction of its $2.4 million expansion of its Butterfly Pavilion and Insect Center at West 104th Avenue and Westminster Boulevard along the northwest corridor. The project, financed by a Jefferson County bond issue, will add about 13,200 sf to the facility.

The nonprofit pavilion, currently with 17,000 sf, opened in 1995 and was designed to handle 100,000 visitors annually. Now, it averages about 250,000 people a year, resulting in hundreds of school groups being turned away. The expansion’s three new classrooms will accommodate another 7,000 students each year.

The expansion will be built in two phases. The first phase will include a one-story addition for the offices, classrooms and exhibit space. Phase two will include a conservatory in the form of a 90-foot high glass pyramid near the street intersection. Additional parking and landscaping will be provided for both phases.

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