Butterfly Pavilion is moving to Broomfield — pending final City Council approval

Rosie the Tarantula will soon have a new home.

The Butterfly Pavilion’s famous spider, as well as its 5,000 other critters, will be moving in 2021 to Broomfield and a more than $30 million facility with double the space — pending final approval from city council.

The new facility housing the pavilion and its affiliate Center for Invertebrate Research and Conservation will have 60,000 square feet, which is twice the size of its current facility on U.S. 36 in Westminster. A larger, state-of-the-art facility will allow the pavilion to be a global leader in research and conservation, president and CEO Patrick Tennyson said.

“(The new facility) will elevate us to the level where we are the hub for that research and conservation to come together and then be told every day to the public,” Tennyson said.

Broomfield Mayor Randy Ahrens joined Tennyson and the board chairman Rob O’Dea at the pavilion’s current location Tuesday to announce the move. City council is scheduled to vote on the measure Tuesday night. The council supported the move when it was discussed at a meeting in May, according to the Broomfield Enterprise.

Built in 1995, the Butterfly Pavilion is the only Association of Zoos and Aquariums-accredited invertebrate zoo. The additional space will allow the zoo to expand its research, create more engaging exhibits, such as a three-story rain forest butterfly encounter, and add to its 75-person staff, Tennyson said.