2019 Landscape Architecture Australia Student Prize: The University of Adelaide

Adelaide Sense City Zoo by Shan Huang, Master of Landscape Architecture, The University of Adelaide

Project statement

Humans have a long history of dominating animals and nowhere is this more evident than in the history of zoos. While animal welfare standards and guidelines have greatly improved, the relationship between tourists and animals remains unbalanced.

Adelaide Sense City Zoo aims to shift this balance by allocating space back to animals in the zoo. More space will be returned to the animals with visitors navigating the environment through tunnels in the landscape that rise and fall and move through different terrains.

The tunnels allow visitors to have a unique experience in each animal’s environment; to feel and experience how animals sense in different ways. The proposal features pipes comprised of block colours that allow visitors to experience the varying seeing patterns of different animals, as well as pipes that transmit animal sounds to visitors. The enclosures include boxes for animal defecation where visitors can smell the scents unique to each creature.

Through immersive sensory engagement, zoo visitors are encouraged to learn about and gain a heightened level of understanding and respect for the animals. Adelaide Sense City Zoo aims to increase communication and break down the barriers between animals and people, as a prelude to future coexistence.

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