Hamilton Zoo invites feedback on master plan

New Zealand’s Hamilton Zoo has made public a master plan featuring proposals for its development over the coming decades. Among the ideas included are an overnight “glamping” experience and more interaction between visitors and animals.

The master plan, work on which began in 2014, is focused on setting the direction for Hamilton Zoo for as much as the next 30 years. Prepared by consultants from international zoo planning and design firm Studio Hanson|Roberts, the plan addresses aspects including the following:

Identify Hamilton Zoo’s point of difference and marketing/promotion approach

Visitor entry, circulation and amenities

Extent of integration with Waiwhakareke Natural Heritage Park

Visitor experience and engagement

Animal exhibits and animal support facilities

Services and support facilities

Implementation, costs and phasing for a 10 – 15-year timeframe

At present, the zoo consists primarily of a series of animal enclosures arranged along pathways. The master plan aims to develop a number of new exhibits and relocate others. Landscaping will be used to build a sense of place, and themed areas will be created for consistency of messaging.

Funding yet to be secured

The master plan has already been endorsed by Hamilton City Council and is now open to public consultation. No funding has been secured at this stage, however. Any projects which stem from the plan will need to be considered as part of the City Council’s 2018-2028 10-Year Plan.

Hamilton Zoo is owned by the people of the city, so they are a crucial stakeholder for us,” says zoo director Stephen Standley “The plan sets out a direction of travel for our zoo over the next 10-15 years, and we want to know what people think.”

Download the plan

The full master plan document can be downloaded from hamilton.govt.nz/zooplan. Consultation closes on May 18th.