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WRS Mandai expansion plans

Discussion in 'Singapore' started by Zooish, 5 Sep 2014.

  1. Zooish

    Zooish Well-Known Member

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    The Singapore Zoo will be expanded by 2020, with the likely relocation of the Bird Park to the Mandai area (where the Zoo, River Safari and Night Safari are located). What is not clear now is whether the Bird Park will continue to be a standalone attraction at the new site or be absorbed into the expanded Zoo. There are about 30 hectares of land set aside for development in the Mandai site.

    Mandai area set for major redevelopment?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 9 Sep 2014
  2. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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    I changed the link above (it went to page two of the article, so I changed it to a single page link, but it didn't come out right on the post. Still works fine though).

    Anyway, not sure what I think about this. The article stresses the bird park "could" be moving, not "will" be moving, but I wonder what this means. Have they already decided it will be, but don't want to say so yet; or are they really undecided about it.

    It would be good having the bird park nearer the zoos, in terms of access (easier to get to than where it is now). But what they have now would just be destroyed. A new bird park would never look as good as the current one, because it would be built from scratch. Against that - would they take the opportunity to make aviaries even better, or go down the other WRS route of making new ones in the "just good enough" fashion?
     
  3. zooboy28

    zooboy28 Moderator Staff Member

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    Yes, I'm not sure I'm a big fan of the idea either - it would be better to have the bird park near the zoo, its current location isn't great to get to, and having them all together would be more desirable in many ways.

    But, given WRS' recent developments, e.g. the polar bear exhibit, River Safari, which have largely been underwhelming, one wonders what would become of the bird park and its impressive (and growing) collection. If it was subsumed into the zoo (and presumably into River & Night Safaris a little as well), then I can only imagine the collection diminishing.

    If it was relocated but remained separate, then I think that could work, and allow for significant improvements over many of the old infrastructure at Jurong (nocturnal house, aviaries), although I imagine much of the charm of an established collection would be lost and it would be a much "cleaner" experience. I'm sure they would spend mega-bucks on it, including lots of mature vegetation, and probably big aviaries, poids, etc. that all look great. But I don't know if they would want 20 adjacent hornbill or parrot aviaries for example, which isn't really a modern way o9f displaying species (sadly).
     
  4. Zooish

    Zooish Well-Known Member

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    In Singapore's context, when the prime minister speaks publicly about something, even if in a tentative tone, means it's almost a done deal. I would imagine that the 'new' bird park would lose much of its taxanomic display concepts.
     
  5. vogelcommando

    vogelcommando Well-Known Member

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  6. vogelcommando

    vogelcommando Well-Known Member

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  7. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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    that's an interesting article. As well as a short aerial video of the area (basically showing some roads and trees) there is a map as well. The text is as follows (I have bolded a couple of bits).

    It would be great if the zoo could be expanded in size (by how much?) but I wouldn't like to see the bird park sunk into it. I think that should remain a separate entity.

    It seems weird that an entirely new zoo is also supposedly in the plans. Is there enough of a visitor base to sustain another one? Especially given that River Safari apparently isn't attracting as many people as anticipated. It may be more of a theme park with animals than an actual zoo though, judging by the little description of possibilities in the article, which would be a bit of a disservice to the existing zoos I think.

    Having hotels and such in the immediate area also would be incredibly handy for Zoochatter types! However I do not think they would be looking at any forms of budget accommodation!!
     
  8. CGSwans

    CGSwans Well-Known Member

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    Looks like I'd best get to Jurong before it's too late.
     
  9. Zooish

    Zooish Well-Known Member

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    Quite the contrary Chlidonias, River Safari has exceeded the attendance estimates while the bird park had its worst attendance in many years in 2013. Clearly being located near the Zoo and Night Safari helped the River Safari, and it is on that premise that the stakeholders are considering moving the bird park to Mandai.
     
  10. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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    Really? I wonder where I read that it was the opposite then. Maybe it is a matter of degree of time passing (starting off slow and picking up) or maybe I am just remembering whatever I read wrong!
     
  11. Zooish

    Zooish Well-Known Member

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  12. Zooish

    Zooish Well-Known Member

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    Mandai development

    More details have been announced for the development of the Mandai nature area, where the Singapore Zoo, River Safari and Night Safari are currently sited. The Jurong Bird Park will relocate here in 2020, and a new Rainforest Park will be added by 2023 as well. There will also be accommodation facilities, public parks, an indoor education centre and a wildlife crossing built over the existing roadway that leads to the Zoo.

    In all, this entire precinct of nature and wildlife attractions will cover 126 hectares.

    Mandai nature precinct will house two new wildlife parks - Channel NewsAsia
     
  13. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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    Do you have any other information on the Rainforest Park? I'm not sure I understand its purpose, given that the zoo will be right next door. All the article says about it is "The 12.5-hectare Rainforest Park will open in 2023. It will be connected to the new Bird Park. Visitors will be able to be fully immersed in the sights and sounds of the tropical rainforest of Southeast Asia."

    The artist impressions look unrealistic (even if choosing to overlook the indri in the lower picture!).
     
  14. TheDisneyTeen

    TheDisneyTeen Member

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    "At the Rainforest Park, visitors can go on a "multi-layered adventure" on aerial walkways that extend from the forest floor to the treetop canopies."
    From the video, it looks like the rainforest park could be a more "immersive" version of the zoo housing rainforest species (like agile gibbons or proboscis monkeys --> based on the video) in which there seems to be no fences or bars. Instead the animals are all around you. If that is the case, I'm all for the idea because it may stimulate viewing these Southeast Asian animals in their natural environment and if expansive enough, almost seem as though they are in the wild. From the video, it seems that there is some thought put into guests being able to enjoy the rainforest, so they have included some trails and waterfalls in the rainforest park. Am excited to see what they do with this, though it seems odd because the zoo wants to focus on rainforest species and yet this park will detract the collection from the zoo.

    Eek my fears have been confirmed..

    “visitors can observe birds in their natural environments at the nine aviaries with different landscapes from around the world,”

    Would that mean all the birds are now housed in walk through aviaries or will the concept be similar to the Wings of Asia aviary in the bird park atm, in which there are some free flying but some "caged" birds too? If it is the former, I can fully expect a lot of the collection to go away.. really hoping that the other parks will absorb almost all of the collection but I highly doubt so. Wouldn't say that I am one who supports the relocation of JBP :( Based on the map, the bird park does seem to occupy quite a bit of space.
     
  15. TheDisneyTeen

    TheDisneyTeen Member

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  16. Zooplantman

    Zooplantman Well-Known Member

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    There are no more details available because the design work is only beginning. No more details exist.
     
  17. Zooish

    Zooish Well-Known Member

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    The Environmental Impact Assessment for the Mandai development has been released. There are some design briefs and plans for the various developments contained within the Main Report which can be downloaded from the link below.

    There is a bit more detail on the proposed Rainforest Park. It will actually cover 2 different sites and contain massive netted enclosures, presumably with free-roaming wildlife within.

    Mandai Project ? Singapore?s home, sanctuary and heritage.
     
  18. zooboy28

    zooboy28 Moderator Staff Member

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    Looks very interesting and exciting, couple of observations (and questions - but these may be unanswerable at present):
    1) The new Rainforest Park will be in two parts, with the second, smaller part (South) in a small wedge between Night Safari and the new bird park). Both will have two "large netted enclosures", but no species are specified.
    2) Some of Night Safari (currently utilised land I think?) will become part of the southern section of the Rainforest Park, will this require relocation of exhibits?
    3) The bird park looks like it will be largely covered with large, walkthrough aviaries, with little open exhibits or space between them, unlike Jurong (more like KL Bird Park perhaps).
    4) There will also be a boardwalk built around the perimeter of the Zoo, and continuing around the reservoir edge of River Safari (including across the existing bridge there) and some of Night Safari. This will allow UNGATED access to the public to "enjoy the reservoir scenery", although I don't know how this will work - it seems especially likely to impact River Safari.
    5) I want to stay at the Eco Lodge!
     
  19. Zooish

    Zooish Well-Known Member

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    Yes, Rainforest Park South will cannibalize land currently utilized for the Asian section of the tram ride. Species that look to be affected include the Indian rhino, banteng, gaur, chital, thamin. Some of these might be relocated to the Rainforest Park.

    Because of stricter biosecurity requirements at the Mandai site, the new bird park will not have open paddocks. Even the amphitheatre for free-flight bird shows will be housed inside an aviary. Likewise the large netted enclosures at Rainforest Park are meant to contain primate and bird species.
     
  20. zooboy28

    zooboy28 Moderator Staff Member

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    Thanks for the info Zooish, will be interesting to see what species will end up at the Rainforest Park.

    Given Jurong's history of escapees, this is probably justified. Will this mean ratites, flamingos, cranes and storks, etc., will be fewer at the new site, and potentially more numerous at the Zoo and River Safari, or will there be more "netted paddocks" at the new site? I didn't really like the large aviaries in Kuala Lumpur, but hopefully Mandai's will be subdivided into more appropriate chunks, and have higher netting.