Chester Zoo have released the first video of their ambitious £30 million Islands project.
The animated video was produced by dan pearlman who have designed the architecture and landscaping of Islands, and shows the scale of the 6ha development inspired by the Philippines, Bali, Sulawesi, Papua, Sumba and Sumatra. Visitors will be able to explore on foot and by boat, seeing animals which will include Sumatran tigers, Sulawesi macaques, Sumatran orang-utans and sunda gharial crocodiles.
A focal point of Islands will be the Monsoon Forest, the largest indoor zoo exhibit in the UK, which will feature feature free flight birds, Sumatran orangutans, macaques and crocodiles.
Chester Zoo estimates that Islands will increase visitor numbers by 150, 000 per annum from current levels of 1.4 million.
The zoo’s development director, Simon Mann, said “Islands is all about immersion – transporting visitors thousands of miles away to experience the splendour of the animals, plants and cultural aspects of these far-flung places. It will take our visitors on an adventure where, for a couple of hours, they feel like they’re in South East Asia. Islands is the biggest and most ambitious development in UK zoo history – there’s nothing else like it.
“The details along the way tell authentic stories of the amazing things that happen on the islands, including our vital field conservation work.
“Many of the animals which people will see are critically endangered in the wild. So we hope that when people see them in such an incredibly realistic and naturalistic setting, it’ll make them have more of an emotional connection with them. If people care about a species they’re more likely to help save them.”
Image: A screen grab from a new computer generated film showing how Chester Zoo’s new Islands project will look (© dan pearlman)
Video: The Islands fly-through video is © dan pearlman