HASSELL’s London office and Arup have been appointed to carry out the concept design of the new Tbilisi Zoo in Georgia
The existing city centre zoo is being replaced by a zoological and recreation complex adjacent to the Tbilisi Sea.
HASSELL has developed a concept that sits lightly within the spectacular new site, implementing a design strategy of minimal disturbance to maintain the area’s natural beauty. Relocating the current zoo’s species and activities calls for a number of new buildings and landscapes. These will include an entrance hub, boulevard, a secondary hub with playground and café, inner zoo and an outer open range zoo as well as woodland areas.
The project builds on HASSELL’s extensive masterplanning, landscape architecture and zoo experience in Australasia, including the award-winning Adelaide Zoo, Taronga Zoo in Sydney and Werribee Open Range in Victoria.
Jon Hazelwood, head of Landscape Architecture at HASSELL’s London Studio, commented: “We believe in the collaboration of landscape architecture, masterplanning and architectural design and the new Tbilisi Zoo is a fantastic opportunity to put this philosophy into practice by developing a new zoo destination from first principles.
“Our team has been inspired by the beauty of the Georgian landscape to create a scheme that works in harmony with the environment, respects the animals that will inhabit it and allows people to observe them in a space akin to their natural habitat.”
HASSELL was recently ranked 30th in the 2012 BD World Architecture Top 100 Survey and the firm has won more than 650 design awards. HASSELL opened its London studio in summer 2011, followed by a studio in Cardiff in December 2011.