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Saw this on the Visit Houston Facebook page: http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/moms/6551657.html

Moving away from the concept of bars and cages, the Houston Zoo in September will break ground for a $50 million African Forest, a 6.5-acre exhibit designed to give patrons the illusion they are strolling through an open landscape populated with chimpanzees, giraffes and other equatorial animals, zoo officials said Tuesday.

If it ends up being anything like the African exhibit at the Cincinnati Zoo, then it will be awesome. The plan sounds very similar.

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Saw this on the Visit Houston Facebook page: http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/moms/6551657.html

If it ends up being anything like the African exhibit at the Cincinnati Zoo, then it will be awesome. The plan sounds very similar.

I might have not been to the see in forever to not know that the chimpanzees were gone.

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Its good that were getting specialized exhibits, i look at other zoos and they have these big corporate-sponsored exhibits.

We deserve something along those lines, don't we?

Also according to the Chron...

The project — a first for the Hermann Park facility — will feature closed-circuit TV connections with area hospitals, allowing patients to view animal keeper presentations or simply to watch animals in their near-natural habitats.

Cannon said the programs first will be made available to children's hospitals, then expanded. Ultimately, they may be made available to local schools, she said.

Edited by citizen4rmptown
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  • 3 months later...

Wow, is all i can say! It is a MAJOR pain in the butt to get to it during the weekends! Not just traffic/construction but the lot fills up and they close it. In the past 4 years i have been turned away atleast 6 times. I know they say take the rail but everytime i do the lot is managable and open!

This is a conspiracy. The truth is out there... somewhere.

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Most people aren't going to know that... if they take the light rail they are going to go to the "Houston Zoo" station since it says... "Houston Zoo"! <_< They need to add "Houston Zoo weekday / alternative" to the name of the Hermann Park light rail station. :P

:sigh: It looks like central planning missed this one too. Ugh.

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Most people aren't going to know that... if they take the light rail they are going to go to the "Houston Zoo" station since it says... "Houston Zoo"! <_< They need to add "Houston Zoo weekday / alternative" to the name of the Hermann Park light rail station. :P

This happened to me. I thought the Houston Zoo stop took you to the zoo, but the zoo is at least a half a mile a way. As I left I still could not find a light rail station close to the zoo so I walked to the museum district area. So does the rail not go nearer to the zoo than the zoo station?

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This happened to me. I thought the Houston Zoo stop took you to the zoo, but the zoo is at least a half a mile a way. As I left I still could not find a light rail station close to the zoo so I walked to the museum district area. So does the rail not go nearer to the zoo than the zoo station?

There's a light rail station in the med center between Cambridge (formerly N. MacGregor) and Ross Sterling, a nice short walk. You went to the museum district station? Isn't that further away than the Hermann Park station?

Edited by JLWM8609
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This happened to me. I thought the Houston Zoo stop took you to the zoo, but the zoo is at least a half a mile a way. As I left I still could not find a light rail station close to the zoo so I walked to the museum district area. So does the rail not go nearer to the zoo than the zoo station?

that's why they want to make money on the "new" hermann park train because metro's doesn't because of the inconvenience. good friend works there and 94% or so enters from the other gate.

Edited by musicman
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that's why they want to make money on the "new" hermann park train because metro's doesn't because of the inconvenience. good friend works there and 94% or so enters from the other gate.

I was riding the kiddie train the other day with my 3 year old niece and noticed folks were boarding from near the light rail station. The folks just got on the train and didn't appear to pay but I'm sure they had to pay at the main station or something. I then heard murmurs from riders saying "I could've boarded here for free?" :lol:

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I was riding the kiddie train the other day with my 3 year old niece and noticed folks were boarding from near the light rail station. The folks just got on the train and didn't appear to pay but I'm sure they had to pay at the main station or something. I then heard murmurs from riders saying "I could've boarded here for free?" :lol:

To be honest, how many people do you really think pay to ride the train? Its only scary every once in awhile when one of those METRO cops is on there asking to see tickets. Thats the bad think about the way METRO built its system you can easily get no for free. In other cities I have been to they make sure you pay because you have to go through the turnstyles.

But let me get back to the Houston Zoo Station. Why did they name it that when it really doesn't take you to the Zoo. They should have buses waiting for people wanting to go to the zoo. I also walked to an entrance that was not open during that day of the week (the one with the big elephant metal statue) and had to walk a long way to get in.

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But let me get back to the Houston Zoo Station. Why did they name it that when it really doesn't take you to the Zoo. They should have buses waiting for people wanting to go to the zoo. I also walked to an entrance that was not open during that day of the week (the one with the big elephant metal statue) and had to walk a long way to get in.

that's why they supposedly added the entrance in the back but it's just not utilized.

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that's why they supposedly added the entrance in the back but it's just not utilized.

Well they need better signs or something.

Its probably okay for locals, but for tourist its a turn off not to know the zoo is actually far away from the zoo rail station. ts false advertising!

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Well they need better signs or something.

Its probably okay for locals, but for tourist its a turn off not to know the zoo is actually far away from the zoo rail station. ts false advertising!

Once in the zoo, you're going to walk a good two or three miles anyhow, if not more. I don't understand why anyone is complaining about the quarter mile extra they'll have to walk to the entrance from one train stop vs another. Hell, you'll be lucky to park as close as either train stop on a busy day anyhow. Plus, if that extra little bit of time added to your jaunt is more than you can physically handle, then perhaps you don't need to go to a zoo in the first place, an air conditioned gym next door to a Jenny Craig outlet and a Hoveround store perhaps, but not the zoo. Your earlier recommendation about putting in bus service to connect the rail stop to the zoo entrance is just ridiculous. I really hope that suggestion was made in jest.

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Attica.. seriously. You can't possibly expect them to walk the 1/4 mile to the zoo entrance without an urban tunnel can you ??

I know. It was stupid of me to ask so much. Perhaps we should air condition the zoo and install those moving walkways like they have at the airport too. Better yet, instead of moving walkways, perhaps they can come equipped with seats. Lord knows I don't like lookin' at a hippopotamus' blubbery butt unless I'm sittin' on my own.

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Once in the zoo, you're going to walk a good two or three miles anyhow, if not more. I don't understand why anyone is complaining about the quarter mile extra they'll have to walk to the entrance from one train stop vs another. Hell, you'll be lucky to park as close as either train stop on a busy day anyhow. Plus, if that extra little bit of time added to your jaunt is more than you can physically handle, then perhaps you don't need to go to a zoo in the first place, an air conditioned gym next door to a Jenny Craig outlet and a Hoveround store perhaps, but not the zoo. Your earlier recommendation about putting in bus service to connect the rail stop to the zoo entrance is just ridiculous. I really hope that suggestion was made in jest.

you only have to walk as far as the place to rent the electric wheelchair/scooter thingy.

Edited by samagon
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I know. It was stupid of me to ask so much. Perhaps we should air condition the zoo and install those moving walkways like they have at the airport too. Better yet, instead of moving walkways, perhaps they can come equipped with seats. Lord knows I don't like lookin' at a hippopotamus' blubbery butt unless I'm sittin' on my own.

In the late 60's or early 70's, there was a train-tram type of thing that took you around the Houston zoo, like the one Astroworld used to have to drop you off at the front gates.

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  • 7 months later...

When I read this I was pretty excited! Sounds good for Houston.

If you haven't gone...I suggest you go. I have a membership. I go 2-3 times a week (to exercise and see the animals)I went to the LA zoo and they had "BANK OF AMERICA" and numerous other sponsors around most displays(Yes, it's more expensive than ours.) Their are expenses...People think that they shouldn't pay for anything.

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If you haven't gone...I suggest you go. I have a membership. I go 2-3 times a week (to exercise and see the animals)I went to the LA zoo and they had "BANK OF AMERICA" and numerous other sponsors around most displays(Yes, it's more expensive than ours.) Their are expenses...People think that they shouldn't pay for anything.

I have never been to the Houston zoo. Zoos just seem depressing to me.

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  • 2 weeks later...

The area for the savanna-type grounds looks like it will be huge. Much better idea than those small areas that the grazers are in, now. Wil be located at the back southeast side.

Will be nice for them to have a place to really run.

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Some years ago the Houston zoo had an interesting hippopotamus exhibit with a large pool and several regular size hippos, not the pygmy ones. Wonder why they got rid of it?

That Hippo exhibit was too old school. It was a concrete pool inside a building. The Houston Zoo has been gradually replacing all of the old school exhibits with more natural habitat enclosures. The old Rhino enclosure was more natural but still it was just a big mud hole with a couple of huts for them to go into.

I think that the new Savanna exhibit will be in the area where the old Children's section used to be.

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  • 3 years later...

Sorry everyone, I know I am going to sound like a dufus, but just came back from a day with my nephews at the zoo! I hadn't been in 20 years, being in LA all that time. (oh how much I missed! Sigh). Anyway, I am back to my hometown with a vengeance. And , wow! The HTown Zoo impressed the hell out of me! So different than I remember. but, I was wondering if Houston was missing an opportunity to create some sort of SD like Zoo on it's outskirts akin to a safari like experience? When it came to the small mammals, and reptiles, I think it was a beautiful representation of their habitats, but I went away feeling a bit sorry for the larger species. Am I being TOO California? Thoughts?

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Yes, you've been gone way too long.  It's a zoo, built for your amusement, not the animals.

 

 

 

Just kidding.  Seriously though, sure it would be nice if they have more space, but what you're suggesting cost money.  If private funds can be gathered to buy lot's of acreage so the animals are free to roam, and if private funds will maintain the land & facilities, that's fine.  But I for one will not approve of any public funds going into such a project.  So that's where it ends.  So to recap, don't give the city any ideas like this, it's a bad idea, they'll run up the cost like crazy and use this as an excuse to raise taxes.  Leave it up to individuals to fund and own.

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Democide. Really now. It's a conversation started about zoos. Not about your tea party.

Marcus...welcome back to town. I'm always flooed my mixed emotions at zoos. Some Animals will always seem uncomfortable in captivity. Especially in a city where space is an issue and economics are at play. Having a zoo in the periphery of the city could be a feasible & interesting idea for African habitats. But, I wonder if these animals were removed from Hermann Park, would that zoo survive. Then, if the whole zoo were up near the Woodlands, or out near Katy, would it be accessible enough, and have enough visitors to serve the whole population and/or be financially viable.

Maybe Cathexis could turn the KBR site into a velt. Lol.

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Everyone makes good sense I guess

 

still maybe this is where our rail line can be incorporated-- you start at the main campus and then the rail line would whisk you south--south enough to arrive at a large  satellite campus that a different enclosed zoo tram could take you through to see animals in their natural habitat. People arriving in their cars at the satellite campus would be able to do it in reverse?  Hmmmmmmm I like this idea but still sounds like a lot of money would be needed for transit and land -sigh 

Edited by trymahjong
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If they redeveloped all the surface parking into a garage, then there would be a lot of room for a safari like expansion.

I think that's a great idea. And they should charge a little for the parking to encourage other transportation.

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Thanks everyone. Good thoughts to digest. I guess I have always been conflicted regarding zoos in general. I love animals and I love nature ( flora) even more, and have always struggled between human domination of our world and the other living creature's right to also exist as naturally as they can. That's what prompted this discussion. I would like others to be aware of other living creatures that we share the planet with,but I also understand that not everyone feels this way, so to make public tax payers fork over their hard earned money for this just because I like it, well, isn't fair, regardless of whatever party one belongs to. A private endeavor is more appropriate, IMO. I suppose another reason is that I would really, really, like a venue in Houston that is world recognized. If we are having trouble creating a theme pArk or an amazing botanical garden, or an Xtreme Park, I was coming at it from the zoo angle!

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They could move to a new location. How about Almeda and Feldman? If they expand Kirby past Holmes and connect it to Almeda, that area would become a lot more accessible as a zoo, more parking, trees, relatively accessible.

 

Yeah, it would be a lot of infrastructure to leave behind, but they could recycle that somehow--like incorporating that into a new aquarium, or something. 

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They could build a temporary parking lot at Cambridge and Lamar Fleming with shuttle service while they complete a parking garage, as that would end up closing some parking.

However, I also tend to agree with others that a parking garage would ruin the aesthetic at Hermann Park (different thread). I disagree that somehow moving the zoo ~5 miles south would somehow add an hour to commute time.

Edited by IronTiger
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They could build a temporary parking lot at Cambridge and Lamar Fleming with shuttle service while they complete a parking garage, as that would end up closing some parking.

However, I also tend to agree with others that a parking garage would ruin the aesthetic at Hermann Park (different thread). I disagree that somehow moving the zoo ~5 miles south would somehow add an hour to commute time.

good idea..

yeah, i was one of those opposing a garage in Hermann Park in the original garage discussion, but quite frankly, i dont see why they couldnt build a 3-4 story garage (that would still be low enough to hide behind trees), with an additional floor underground. that would make up for the 4-5 parking lots at the zoo. here is a great example of how to hide garages with foliage. or do like the parking garages at the Memorial Hermann hospital in Memorial City with lattice work and vines growing up the side. painting the concrete green would also help. there are a number of ways to hide a garage, and i think the benefits of a garage in that location outweigh the visibility blight garages can cause.

the Dallas Zoo is twice the size of ours. we need to figure out a way to expand the zoo.

surreal_estate_02-1.jpg

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Has that ever been very convincing and didn't come off as a bit tacky at best?

Well I mean green concrete combined with vines or some other form of foliage/shrubbery on the sides, and tall trees surrounding it, so it blends in better/you don't see grey concrete patches peaking out. A green garage in the middle of nowhere looks tacky, agreed. Though I don't mind the paint on the roof of the Exxon garages, or the pine trees painted on the side of the garages somewhere near Memorial City I think(?) on the south side of i10 west. It's better looking than an uncovered/un painted grey concrete garage.

Edited by cloud713
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  • The title was changed to Houston Zoo

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