Thursday, August 28, 2014

London Zoo unveils plans for walkways over lion enclosure.

Loud and proud: one of the zoo's lions has a kickabout (Picture: Alex Lentati)

Mark Blunden
Updated: 09:16, 15 August 2014

Visitors to London Zoo could soon be getting a lot closer to its lions.
Bosses want to demolish the existing enclosures to build a “lion 360 experience” with high-level walkways, according to plans lodged with Westminster council.
It would nearly triple the size of the existing 750 square metre enclosure, built in the Seventies, and would also give visitors the chance to see primates  and vultures.
But there are concerns its size could impact on the zoo’s Grade I listed penguin pool.
The application, due to be heard by councillors on Tuesday, states: "The proposals would be to create a more naturalistic setting for the Asiatic lions, taking influences from the Gir Forest [in India], where the only population of Asiatic lions exist in the wild.

"The high-level platforms and walkway will be faced in a variety of materials, render, timber (bamboo) and corrugated steel.
"The proposal would enlarge the enclosure areas whilst maintaining the same site area of 7,695 square metres to contain Asiatic lions, primates and vultures."
The site was formerly home to the zoo’s cattle, sheep and deer in the late 19th century.
Designers revised the plans to minimise the impact on the zoo’s trees.

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