The City of Duluth and the Lake Superior Zoological Society worked collaboratively to create a concept plan for the Lake Superior Zoo and Fairmount Park. The planning team included City staff, Zoo staff, Zoological Society board members, and Parks & Recreation Commissioners. The planning process included input from citizens through four public presentations, as well as online and paper comments. The concept plan was unanimously approved by the Parks & Recreation Commission on March 9, 2016 and by the City Council on March 14, 2016.
The Lake Superior Zoo/Fairmount Park Concept Plan features:
- A revitalized, more compact 10-acre zoo for $15.7 million
- A signature park for the St. Louis River Corridor that will include picnic facilities, native landscaping, restored stream banks, open lawns and a destination playground.
- New and improved wheelchair accessible paths and trail connections
- New and improved animal exhibits for similar animal collection
- Innovative new Forest Discovery Zone area mixing play, education, and up-close animal experiences in a forest environment
- New zoo amphitheater to host interactive educational programs with live animals
- Renewed main building mixing play, education, and animal experiences
- Re-purposing the flood-damaged Polar Shores exhibit as a new signature bear exhibit