Expedition Asia: The Design
Relocating the tiger and sloth bear habitats.
New animal care facilities and significantly expanded outdoor exhibit yards for tigers and sloth bears will be relocated from the current space and moved into what is now the Kansas trail area. The main point of entry for guests will be opposite the Zoo's current anteater and maned wolf exhibit. Multiple vantage points and animal training walls, providing animal encounters for guests, will be a feature of both exhibits. Finally, animal care staff will have the ability to safely switch tigers into the sloth bear exhibit (and vice versa) for animal enrichment purposes via an overhead passageway that connects the two animal care buildings.
Expanding the current leopard exhibit.
A modern animal care facility will be nestled within the limestone walls from the Zoo's original 1930's-era exhibits. The outdoor exhibit yard will expand significantly and a new guest viewing area will be built within the Zoo's current cinereous vulture exhibit, including a training wall where guests can watch leopards complete regular training activities under the supervision of keeper staff. Finally, a display depicting the history of the Zoo will be a feature within the public viewing area.
Expedition Asia will develop an ADA-accessible circulation path that will connect guests near the current Zoo pavilion area, wind through the new tiger and sloth bear exhibits, and then end near the Asian small-clawed otters. At that point, guests can turn right and enjoy new views of the leopards or head left and visit otters, red pandas and gibbons. For guests, no matter their mobility level, these new walkways will be a dramatic improvement and truly immerse them in the animals' native Asian habitats. Additionally, the path features an overlook pavilion and viewing deck where guests can enjoy glimpses into the three new exhibits. The space will also offer an event venue for roughly 150 guests.
Preserving the Zoo's heritage.
A major objective of Expedition Asia was to integrate modern animal care and guest practices with the preservation of the site's historic architecture and natural landscape. This design incorporates almost all of the original 1930's WPA-funded, limestone architecture found throughout the space. It also preserves many of the iconic trees located throughout the terrain.
Where Will Expedition Asia Located?
Check out the map below to envision the future home of Expedition Asia. Many of the animals along the Kansas Trail will be relocated as part of the project, and once Expedition Asia is complete, the current tiger and sloth bear exhibits will be an opportunity for future growth.
Ella Casey, Assistant Zoo Director, at 785-587-2737 or firstname.lastname@example.org