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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

A Redesigned Zoo Where Humans Stay Hidden, by Kelsey Campbell-Dollaghan

I came across this article today and thought it was interesting - though perhaps not as well-explained as I would have liked it to have been (though in fairness to the author, she does emphasize that this is a very rough draft of an idea).  The concept of minimizing the visitor impact on the animal is of obvious value, especially for sensitive species, as well as species which are part of ongoing reintroduction efforts.

That being said, there are plenty of intelligent zoo animals, such as primates and bears, which seem to enjoy interacting with the public, provided they are given opportunities for privacy and escape from the public eye. What works for some species may not be as advantageous for others.

A Redesigned Zoo Where Humans Stay Hidden Could Be Better For Animals, 
by Kelsey Campbell-Dollaghan

A Redesigned Zoo Where Humans Stay Hidden Could Be Better For Animals

Even the most zoo-friendly amongst us probably harbor mixed feelings about the undeniable psychological and physical toll that captivity takes on animals. The Danish architects at Bjarke Ingels Group think they've designed a better way. A Zootopia, if you will, where humans are usually hidden from animals by grass shelters and mirrored pods.

According to ArchDaily, Ingels and co presented a design for a new master plan of Givskud Zoo, an almost 50-year-old zoo in Denmark, at a press conference today. The design—which it bears mentioning is still very premature—imagines almost 300 acres of zoo divided into continents, which visitors access by a number of ramps, bridges, and tunnels burrowed into the landscape. In some areas, visitors would hide inside hollowed out log piles. In others, shelters would be embedded in grassy hillocks near the animals. At the crux of the park, a wide stone bowl lets them climb up to observe the parkland and access trails through the open territory. 

Read the rest of the article here

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