Historic Pepper Family Wildlife Center at Chicago’s Lincoln Park Zoo sees a major renovation, restoration, and expansion

Historic Pepper Family Wildlife Center at Chicago’s Lincoln Park Zoo sees a major renovation, restoration, and expansion

1 dic. 2021 Noticias

Dedicated as a Chicago Landmark in 2005, the historic lion house at the centre of the city’s Lincoln Park Zoo was originally designed by architect Dwight Perkins and completed in 1912. Notable for its decorative brickwork, terracotta details, lion mosaics and grand hall with vaulted Guastavino tile ceiling, the building has undergone limited work since its last significant renovation in 1990.

Tom Harris

With a desire to substantially improve lion habitat and the experience of visitors, this latest renovation, restoration, and expansion of the 54,000 square foot facility was undertaken by Goettsch Partners in collaboration with Seattle-based zoo exhibition specialists PJA Architects.

Tom Harris

 

Works include nearly doubling the size of the previous lion habitat while providing a more immersive experience for visitors. The design team also worked closely with the Commission on Chicago Landmarks to preserve, restore and enhance significant features of the Arts and Crafts building. Key elements of preservation include the masonry, clay tile roof, copper gutters, doors and windows.  

Tom Harris

Spanning the north side of the building, the new lion habitat was informed by data collected by the zoo over past years on the behaviour and preferences of the resident lions. A savanna-style habit includes detailed rockwork to introduce climbing features while heating and cooling elements offer climate control. Tree structures and deadfall are made from trees certified by the Forest Stewardship Council and food ziplines, simulating prey, provide further enrichment to the habitat. 

Tom Harris

Large 1-1/2’’ thick glass panels provide views over the outdoor lion space and up-close viewing opportunities for visitors from both inside and outside the building. With an overall educational focus on conservation efforts in Africa,  the project also features a demonstration training wall where visitors can view lions working with zoo staff to particulate in their care. 

Tom Harris
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