New Penguin Center Coming to The Detroit Zoo
In 1968 the Detroit Zoo lead the way with the first dedicated penguin facility in North America. In 2016 they will continue on this path of progress with the new Polk Penguin Conservation Center. The new penguin habitat will feature four species, marconi, gentoo, rockhopper, and king, inside a chilled 326,000 gallon tank. Visitors will descend a series of ramps while surrounded by a 4D antarctic experience to get into character. Once at the bottom you will pass through an underwater acrylic tunnel leading to a viewing room with a 38 foot wide window to see the penguins swimming. From there, guests move through a second acrylic tunnel into an exhibit gallery and back upstairs where the penguins will be visible on the icy surface.
The new building’s architecture is inspired by icebergs and includes a waterfall in the center. An official opening date has not been announced, but is expected to be around early April. Once the Polk Center is fully operational and the penguins have moved into their new home, the old Penguinarium will be converted into a bat conservation center. For now, enjoy the video below which shows a walk through of the current construction with some renderings of what the exhibit will look like when finished. I’m looking forward to heading there with my family this Spring and will have plenty of pictures to share with my readers!
For more information on the penguin habitat and species living there, visit The Detroit Zoo website.