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Assiniboine Park Zoo Journey to Churchill

Sprawled out over ten acres, the Journey to Churchill exhibit is the largest new Canadian zoo project in over 25 years. Opened in summer, 2014, the exhibit offers visitors an unparalleled opportunity to experience the diverse culture, landscape and wilderness of Canada’s north. The exhibit combines elements of conservation, research, education and public display to engage visitors with an unforgettable interactive experience. Number TEN, as associate architect in partnership with Portico Group, designed a network of facilities that play a prominent role within the exhibit.

The Leatherdale International Polar Bear Conservation Centre was the first building to be opened to the public. This unique LEED®-Silver certified facility combines research and lab space with an interactive media exhibit focused on climate change and its current and future impacts on the polar bear population.

The Tundra Grill is a 150-seat restaurant, complete with an interactive kids play zone and souvenir shop. Designed to resemble the architectural character of the port of Churchill, visitors can relax over a hot meal while watching the polar bears just beyond a 150-foot-long wall made of specially re-enforced glass.

The centrepiece of the Journey to Churchill Exhibit is the LEED®-Silver certified Gateway to the Arctic. This one-of-a kind facility  features a 360-degree theatre that provides viewers a new perspective on the landscape and animals of Manitoba’s north. The facility also houses a large salt water aquarium for polar bears, which visitors can view from underneath a 10-foot-wide acrylic tunnel.

Location: Winnipeg, MB
Client: Assiniboine Park Conservancy
Number TEN's Role: Associate Architect
Size: 10 acres
Completion: 2014