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09 Mar 2012

Chester Zoo unveils £30m Islands plans
BY Pete Hayman

Chester Zoo has unveiled plans to bring the islands of Sumatra, Papua New Guinea and the Philippines to Cheshire, UK, as part of a £30m scheme showcasing its conservation work.

The Islands project is to enable visitors to explore the themed and immersive landscapes by boat or on foot, with features including educational exhibits, play areas and eateries.

Species including the Indonesian Rhinoceros Hornbill and the Sumatran Orang-utan will be among on show, with a major new Indonesian tropical house also included in the plans.

Architects from the Dan Pearlman group of Germany are behind the designs for the Islands project, which Chester Zoo believes will be the first scheme of its kind in the UK.

Zoo director general Dr Mark Pilgrim said: "Our wildlife expedition will be based on real life, real people and real stories and will be unlike anything seen in a UK zoo.

"Islands will not just showcase the areas that the zoo works but will be a platform for some of the most endangered animals on the planet."

Outline planning permission has already been secured, with detailed plans due to go before the local authority in late May. It is hoped work will start later this year.


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