Danish firm Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) and the Givskud Zoo in Givskud, Denmark, revealed the redesign and expansion plans for the nearly 300-acre zoo built in 1969. The design philosophy behind the project, Zootopia, is to “create the best possible and freest possible environment for the animals’ lives and relationships with each other and visitors,” BIG said in a release.
The central plaza provides an overview of the park and access to three loops, representing different continents: Asia, Africa, and the Americas. BIG’s plan involves accessing each region through various means of transportation: by foot (a 2.5-mile-long hike across all three regions), bike (Africa), boat (Asia), and gondola lift (Americas).
The firm plans to “integrate and hide the buildings as much as possible in the landscape,” in part by building structures characteristic of the animals’ natural habitats. The elephant’s living quarters, for example, could consist of a hill of rice fields and the shelter for bears could be in between a stack of lumber.
The first phase is expected to be completed in 2019, coinciding with the zoo’s 50th anniversary.
For more projects by BIG, visit the firm’s profile.