Adelaide Zoo Giant Panda Forest, Australian Building Project, Photo, Architect, Design, Picture

Adelaide Zoo Giant Panda Forest, Australia

South Australia Zoological Development design by HASSELL Architects

post updated 23 August 2021 ; 10 Aug 2010

Adelaide Zoo Giant Panda Forest design

Photos by Ben Wrigley

Adelaide Zoo Giant Panda Forest


The Adelaide Zoo Giant Panda Forest is one of only eight exhibits of its kind in the world and the first in the southern hemisphere. The design of the Panda Forest embodies the Zoo’s core principles of environment, education, conservation and research and redefines the concept of a zoo in the 21st century – as a contemporary conservation organisation with vital breeding and research programs.

Adelaide Zoo Giant Panda Forest Exhibit design

The Adelaide Zoo Giant Panda Forest architecture and landscape responds to the pandas’ native Chinese heritage within an Australian context, balancing the need to provide the pandas with choices, comfort and stimuli while providing management flexibility for keepers and excellent viewing access for visitors.

Adelaide Zoo Giant Panda Forest visitors

A series of ‘pavilions’ in the landscape frame a changing relationship between the public and the pandas, providing alternating views of landscape, animal behaviour and habitat.

Adelaide Zoo Giant Panda Forest Building

Solar orientation was an imperative factor in site planning to maximise the opportunities for the giant pandas to use the 600 square metre external exhibits. Chilled rocks, streams and waterfalls for bathing, mature shade trees for climbing, and glass reinforced concrete caves for shade and shelter create a comfortable and stimulating environment for the animals.

Adelaide Zoo, Panda Exhibit for Hassell ADL

The holding building sets new standards for the management of giant pandas, providing keepers with flexibility and control and housing a research facility with 24-hour Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) and observation.

Adelaide Zoo Giant Panda Forest Adelaide Zoo Giant Panda Forest
photos : Peter Bennetts

A central glazed axis provides public views of research, food preparation and holding facilities. The sheltered public viewing terrace incorporates a giant underslung bamboo canopy and large sliding screens to accommodate crowds and manage privacy.

Adelaide Zoo Giant Panda Forest
image from architects practice

South Australia zoological building design images / information from HASSELL Architects

Giant Panda Forest Adelaide Zoo design : HASSELL

Location: Adelaide Zoo, Adelaide, South Australia

Architecture in Adelaide

Contemporary Architecture in Adelaide

Another Adelaide Zoo building designed by HASSELL:

Adelaide Zoo Entrance Precinct
Adelaide Zoo Precinct
photo : Peter Bennetts
Adelaide Zoo Entrance Precinct

Adelaide Buildings

Architecture designs by HASSELL

HASSELL – Selected Projects

Western Grandstand Adelaide Oval, Adelaide, Australia
Design: HASSELL JV with Cox Architects
Western Grandstand Adelaide Oval
image from architects
Western Grandstand Adelaide Oval

Kolling Research Building, Royal North Shore Hospital Campus, Sydney
Kolling Research Building
image from architects
Kolling Research Building

Zoo Buildings

Another Australian Zoo Building:

Perth Zoological Gardens Orang-utan Enclosure, Western Australia
Design: Iredale Pedersen Hook Architects
Perth Zoo Orang-utan Enclosure
photo © Shannon McGrath
Perth Zoo Orang-utan Enclosure

Zoo Buildings

Islands at Chester Zoo Building, England, UK
Design: AECOM, Architects
Islands at Chester Zoo Building
photo courtesy Novum Structures UK
Islands at Chester Zoo Building

Australian Architecture

Australian Houses


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