Construction Update: Summer 2017

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Construction Update: Summer 2017

Nashville Zoo excitedly opened two of four new exhibits this spring. Guests can now venture along a suspension rope bridge to see four Mexican spider monkeys from a treetop viewing area at Spider Monkey: Treetop Passage as well as watch four young Southern white rhinos wallowing in mud pits at the former elephant habitat.  

While we are excited for the opening of two new exhibits, the Zoo is still working hard to complete construction on its two remaining projects for Andean bear and Sumatran tiger. Everyone here at the Zoo shares the excitement and anticipation of the openings, and we thank you for your patience and support during this time of growth and transformation for Nashville Zoo.  



What animals are off exhibit due to construction? 

Most of the Zoo is not affected by our construction. You can still walk through our popular Kangaroo Kickabout, get up close to our birds in Lorikeet Landing, watch apes play on Gibbon Islands and experience dozens of animal exhibits that have been at the Zoo for years. 

These exhibits are closed due to construction:

  • American Alligator – The path leading from Flamingo Lagoon, past Alligator Cove, and to our two newest exhibits is being repaved and widened to prepare for more foot traffic.
  • Tiger – This exhibit was built in 1989 and was in great need of renovation. The new plans call for an expanded outdoor area for the cats and closer viewing options for our guests.
  • Eurasian Lynx –The exhibit has been closed since early 2015 due to the construction taking place next door at our new Andean Bear exhibit.



Construction Progress Report

We've run into construction issues with our bear habitat which has delayed progress. If there are no other development issues, we hope to have these open in spring 2018. At this time, we do not have exact opening dates.

Andean Bear Exhibit

Crews are currently working on installing lighting, applying interior and exterior wall coverings, as well as completing major water features including waterfalls, pool, and moat that surrounds the exhibit. A jungle themed mural and tropical plants are currently being added to the exclusive exhibit in the women’s restroom.


Sumatran Tiger Exhibit

While the thatch roofing has been completed, there is still work being done on the interior of the new bridge. Because we are expanding the space for the three tigers, we are in the process of moving rock so we can complete the details of the outdoor yard as well as adding new features to the public viewing area.

Zoo Knoxville has generously offered to care for the three Sumatran tigers for a few months while we complete the renovations to the exhibit. The three sisters came from Topeka Zoo and can be seen on exhibit at Zoo Knoxville. They will move to Nashville in spring 2018.


New Project: Parking Lot Re-Development

2018 will be a monumental year for Nashville Zoo and we expect more guests than ever before. To help prepare, we will be re-developing the original, central parking area to make room for additional spaces. Our plan is to work during our slower, winter months and be finished by spring.

Posted by Nashville Zoo at 11:02

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