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Winner - Gold
Designer: Kieran Stanley
Design Type: Immersive environment
Company / Organization / School: dan pearlman Erlebnisarchitektur
Team Members: Bernd Blome, Ida Mai Hess, Björn Persche, Julius Strauß, Gunther Gottelt, Anna Buttkus, Nicholas Chen, Antje Gliwa-Brauns, Neele Steinbock, Jörg Schneider, Daniela Blome, Natalie Gitzinger and others
The immersive environment Islands at Chester Zoo (UK) is modelled after six Southeast Asian islands in order to communicate the zoo’s conservation work in this region. Islands reconstructs the daily life of nature conservationists and gives visitors a chance to experience their work as well as discovering the uniqueness of this region’s flora and fauna – 22 endangered species are integrated in the environment. We were responsible for the strategic development, the didactic storyline and the design of Islands including the architecture of 14 Indo-Pacific style structures and the modern Monsoon Forest show house, the landscape design and the 450 m Lazy River boat tour. The elegant steel structure of the show house made up of 25 girders of differing length, yet identical radii, spans up to 36 meters and supports the ETFE membrane, allowing for heights of up to 11 meters within. With a volume of 40 million GBP and a total of 74,000-square-metre, the immersive environment is the largest zoo development undertaking in the history of British zoos. Islands opened in summer 2015.