The land of bears and wolves

The new exhibition area in Cherkassy Zoo includes the territory of bears, wolves, and a reservoir for otters built into the visitors’ gallery.
Unlike classical forms of exhibiting, the project used the principle of immerse exposition.
After commissioning the attendance of the zoo has increased from 94 thousands visitors in 2016 to 174 thousands in 2017.

The whole complex is represented by three buildings: an exposition gallery for visitors, a block of technical premises and a block of enclosures. In the technical unit there are bathrooms for visitors, a security room, and a boiler room. The block of enclosures consists of two parts. In the first part are the enclosures of bears and wolves for feeding and check-up. Here are the dens, where the bears sleep on winter time. The second part of the block consists of enclosures of relocation, where are placed newly arrived animals for quarantine surveillance.
One of the project’s accents is a playground with its geoplastic form, close to the natural landscape.

The exposition is designed in such way that it is not a dead-locked, but continues the uninterrupted route for visitors throughout the zoo and elongates it.

One of the important tasks of the project was to reproduce natural live environment of the animals. The coexistence of species is recreated according to the zoogeographic principle. Thus, the project provides possibility for wolves and bears to be on the same territory.
The formation of the gallery caused by the fact that a comfortable viewing distance for human is up to 20 meters. Going through the exhibition, due to the difference in levels, new immersed viewing points are formed. This also helps to increase the animals’ territory. These viewing points, each of which is unique, allow to see different fragment of the animals’ habitat. In the center of the building there are viewing platforms at different heights - panoramic platform on the second level and enclosed room at the ground level with a water exposure. While designing the gallery, we paid attention to the ramps and their inclines in order to ensure the principle of inclusivity.
The territory of the animals are fenced with concrete walls without any decoration and made according to our own design. Besides them, additional security for visitors are provided by natural barriers - changings of ground levels and water.

Application of structures and materials of the building complex differs on the basis of functional programs of its parts.
Since the animals presented are dangerous predators, one of the main tasks of the building was to ensure safety for visitors. Thus, gallery’s walls are made of monolithic reinforced concrete, thickness of 300 mm. Viewing positions - made of tempered glass.
The walls of the block of enclosed enclosures are made of ceramsite concrete blocks 250 mm, that are locally produced.
The walls of the winter enclosures are insulated with 100 mm foam polystyrene, in this way the internal microclimate is preserved. The roof is made of sandwich panels, with insulator of 200 mm. The internal fence on the side of the corridor in the block is made of metal rods, for the possibility of inspection and care of animals.
The technical unit is made of ceramsite concrete blocks with a thickness of 250 mm. Insulation - foam polystyrene 100 mm. The roof is flat made of corrugated steel sheet, the thickness of the insulation is 200 mm.