After yesterday's elephant update, we've had quite a few requests for photos of the construction zone for African Elephant Crossing, Cleveland Metroparks Zoo's new world-class elephant exhibit scheduled to open in 2011. So, I'll be writing several blogs to share construction photos and some neat information on what is taking place "behind the fence."Because everyone's been asking and we love the feedback, I'll be posting a series of construction photos from behind the scenes, or as we like to put it, "inside the fence," of African Elephant Crossing. About a month ago, I was treated to a tour of the construction zone from RFC Contracting Inc.'s Project Manager, Dick Chodera. Here is my first batch of photos with some description of what they show.
As you probably have read in the earlier article, we're working toward LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification for the new exhibit, which involves standards for energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality, and stewardship of resources and sensitivity to their impacts.
The next three photos show the 26-foot hole that will house the boilers for the building and the water filtration system for the 10-foot elephant pool. This system will conserve energy by only requiring the water to be pumped back into the pool. Gravity will do the initial work -- water will flow downward from the pool into the tanks and filtration system. Pumps will only be required to move the water 16 feet back up into the pool. Water conservation is also an important part of this project, which is why the water is filtered and recirculated back into the pool. The third photo below shows the construction of a concrete slab on which one of the water tanks will sit.
Look for Parts 2 & 3 of the series next week - I'll post some construction photos of the refurbishing of the Pachyderm Building, the aviary and one of the outdoor elephant ranges and try to explain some of the design standards for elephant exhibits.