St Louis Zoo has revealed its plans for the 172-hectare complex it recently agreed to purchase in north St Louis County as part of its long-term conservation plan.
The land is being acquired from the United Association of Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 562 for $7.1m. St Louis Zoo plans to set aside 70 hectares for a new zoo safari and wildlife adventures that could include safari tours, zip-lines and overnight camping.
The remaining 102 hectares will be used for a new breeding facility.
St Louis Zoo has raised the $7.1m needed to purchase the land but is now asking for a sales tax increase to pay for the cost of the development and upkeep of the existing Forest Park zoo. In return, entry to the new facility would be free for city and county residents.
“We have long desired an expanded land area to provide the best possible care for animals, especially a place where we can focus on conservation breeding efforts with endangered animals and those that are at risk,” said Jeffrey Bonner, CEO of the zoo, when announcing the land purchase.
“There are very few parcels of land in the metropolitan area that could meet this need and we are grateful to have entered into this agreement with Local 562. The property offers great terrain, perimeter fencing, utilities, lakes, good buffers surrounding and existing buildings.”