COST of Wisconsin, Inc. has been a full service zoological exhibit contractor for nearly six decades. In 1957, COST was hired by the Milwaukee County Zoo to create a truly unique zoological experience with an alternative to the standard cage exhibits. This revolutionary project pioneered the modern zoological parks and gardens of today. Since then, COST has fabricated exhibits for over half the zoos and aquariums in the U.S. and for several international clients; many have won industry awards.
As a thirty year AZA member and industry leader, we are able to meet unique challenges common in customized, one-of-a-kind projects. COST works diligently to create aesthetically pleasing, cost-effective, durable, and animal-safe exhibits. Highly qualified artisans and construction personnel utilize conventional materials to reproduce and enhance the exhibits we build. But this is only half the equation. The entire team has deep respect for the animals that are placed within the exhibits developed, so great efforts are taken throughout preconstruction through final construction to ensure a safe habitat is built. Furthermore, these modern immersive environments are developed to engage zoo patrons, in hopes that they too, will better understand wildlife and the challenges of preservation and conservation.
COST begins each project with scaled models based upon specifications provided by architectural drawings. These models are then used to properly execute the approval and construction processes. COST’s experience in many different materials including shotcrete, GFRC, FRP, urethanes, epoxies, various woods, and acrylic, allows us to recreate any environment. Earth bank textures, rock work, water features, faux trees, and decorative coral inserts are just a few of the features developed within zoo exhibits. To further the realism, natural stone, crustaceans, invertebrates, mineral deposits, lichens, and various topical aging enhancements are added to exhibits providing an undisturbed, timeless, and truly authentic finished product.
The gallery of photos is an overview of our work in zoological parks. These projects represent work performed in all types of materials and construction disciplines, providing clients with a single source solution to meet their exhibit needs.