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Zoo Masterplan

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Toledo Zoological Gardens Toledo, Ohio
1979 through 1983

“Architects wanted to design a Pachyderm Building” is how the ad read in the newspaper, and like many other architects in northern Ohio, we responded but when I asked to see their master plan and got little more than an old blueprint with penciled boxes for buildings we then and there decided they first needed an overall plan for the zoo. So it started…

Without any zoo experience I partnered with a nationally known zoo consultant and proceeded to begin what turned out to be a multi-year 45 project relationship with the zoo. From the initial master plan we renovated the great ape building getting almost on a first name with Max the resident Lowland Gorilla. We developed a hands on petting zoo as well as what was known as the Diversity of Life interactive museum for children. We renovated nearly all of the WPA era buildings as well as a complete restoration of the 1903 original greenhouses.

The Zoo today stands as a testament to vision of the Zoo’s director, William Dennler and to the creative abilities we brought to this very unique architectural commission.

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