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Minnesota Zoo plans show focus on outdoor pursuits
POSTED 09 Jan 2020 . BY Andy Knaggs
The Treetop Trail would transform the zoo's defunct monorail track Credit: Minnesota Zoo
A US$22m (€19.8m, £16.9m) "Treetop Trail" built on a former monorail track, a nature-based preschool, and camping facilities are among reported changes that Minnesota Zoo in Apple Valley, US, is considering.

The Minneapolis-based Star Tribune newspaper reports that the plans have been developed and presented to the board by director and president John Frawley, who joined the zoo in 2016. They are notable for their focus on outdoor pursuits as a means to attract visitors, rather than new or exotic animal exhibits.

Key parts of the project include the aforementioned Treetop Trail, which the report says at 1.3 miles long would likely be the longest elevated trail loop in the US, a rock-climbing facility within a vacant IMAX theatre, paved trails, a lodge and several camping options.

"The Treetop Trail is what's got everybody buzzing," Charlene Briner, vice chairwoman of the zoo board, is quoted as saying. "They like the idea that we are redeploying and modernising an asset that is right now unused."

Animal "encounters" could be manufactured in new areas, such as by organising hikes out to visit an elk herd, or by zookeepers bringing certain animals to campsites or the Treetop Trail.

Overall the facilities plan aims to make the zoo easier to navigate; it will also renovate ageing elements – such as an animal hospital – and fix infrastructures such as bridges, roads and roofs.

The zoo, which typically receives about a third of its budget from the state, is seeking US$39m (€35.1m, £29.9m) from the legislature in 2020, including US$11m (€9.9m, £8.45m) for the Treetop Trail, US$15.5m (€13.95m, £11.9m) for revitalisation projects, and US$12.5m (€11.25m, £9.6m) for repairs and updates.

Ms Briner added that the plans did not mean that the zoo's identity and focus on animals would necessarily change, saying: "We don't want to become like a nature amusement park."

The zoo said the plans actually align with its longtime mission, which is to "connect people, animals and the natural world to save wildlife".
The proposed Treetop Trail would be 1.3mi (2.1km) long Credit: Minnesota Zoo
The trail would give visitors a new perspective of the zoo's animals in their natural surroundings Credit: Minnesota Zoo
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Jobs   News   Products   Magazine
NEWS
Minnesota Zoo plans show focus on outdoor pursuits
POSTED 09 Jan 2020 . BY Andy Knaggs
The Treetop Trail would transform the zoo's defunct monorail track Credit: Minnesota Zoo
A US$22m (€19.8m, £16.9m) "Treetop Trail" built on a former monorail track, a nature-based preschool, and camping facilities are among reported changes that Minnesota Zoo in Apple Valley, US, is considering.

The Minneapolis-based Star Tribune newspaper reports that the plans have been developed and presented to the board by director and president John Frawley, who joined the zoo in 2016. They are notable for their focus on outdoor pursuits as a means to attract visitors, rather than new or exotic animal exhibits.

Key parts of the project include the aforementioned Treetop Trail, which the report says at 1.3 miles long would likely be the longest elevated trail loop in the US, a rock-climbing facility within a vacant IMAX theatre, paved trails, a lodge and several camping options.

"The Treetop Trail is what's got everybody buzzing," Charlene Briner, vice chairwoman of the zoo board, is quoted as saying. "They like the idea that we are redeploying and modernising an asset that is right now unused."

Animal "encounters" could be manufactured in new areas, such as by organising hikes out to visit an elk herd, or by zookeepers bringing certain animals to campsites or the Treetop Trail.

Overall the facilities plan aims to make the zoo easier to navigate; it will also renovate ageing elements – such as an animal hospital – and fix infrastructures such as bridges, roads and roofs.

The zoo, which typically receives about a third of its budget from the state, is seeking US$39m (€35.1m, £29.9m) from the legislature in 2020, including US$11m (€9.9m, £8.45m) for the Treetop Trail, US$15.5m (€13.95m, £11.9m) for revitalisation projects, and US$12.5m (€11.25m, £9.6m) for repairs and updates.

Ms Briner added that the plans did not mean that the zoo's identity and focus on animals would necessarily change, saying: "We don't want to become like a nature amusement park."

The zoo said the plans actually align with its longtime mission, which is to "connect people, animals and the natural world to save wildlife".
The proposed Treetop Trail would be 1.3mi (2.1km) long Credit: Minnesota Zoo
The trail would give visitors a new perspective of the zoo's animals in their natural surroundings Credit: Minnesota Zoo
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Parks! America makes play to add Texas safari park Aggieland to its roster
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Founded in 2014, Red Raion is the CGI studio specialized in media based attractions. [more...]
QubicaAMF UK

QubicaAMF is the largest and most innovative bowling equipment provider with 600 employees worldwi [more...]
Simworx Ltd

The company was initially established in 1997. Terry Monkton and Andrew Roberts are the key stakeh [more...]
Vekoma Rides Manufacturing B.V.

Vekoma Rides has a large variety of coasters and attractions. [more...]
+ More profiles  
FEATURED SUPPLIER

Global Solutions for Clothing creates award-winning costumes
Global Solutions for Clothing (GSC) is a multi-award winning costume specialist that has been creating high quality costume for more than 60 years. [more...]
VIDEO GALLERY

Red Raion: Meet the Team - Introduction
Red Raion is the CGI studio specialized in media based attraction. Find out more...
More videos:
Trailer Peter Pan - Saving Tinkerbell VR – Red Raion
Experience the experience – Polin Waterparks & Pool Systems
Jurassic War - Immersive tunnel movie trailer – Red Raion
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CATALOGUE GALLERY
 

+ More catalogues  
DIRECTORY
+ More directory  
DIARY

 

23-25 Mar 2020

MuseumNext Europe

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23-25 Mar 2020

Dubai Entertainment Amusement and Leisure Exhibition (DEAL)

Dubai World Trade Centre, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
+ More diary  
 


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Leisure Media, Portmill House, Portmill Lane,
Hitchin, Hertfordshire SG5 1DJ Tel: +44 (0)1462 431385

©Cybertrek 2020

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