Thursday, April 12, 2012


***Partial Zoo Closure during Construction of new Walkways - Monday April 16 through Sunday April 29***

The Santa Ana Zoo is getting new walkways as part of a construction project beginning Monday, April 16, to replace all of the zoo’s old asphalt paths.  As a result, a large portion of the zoo will be closed from Monday, April 16, through Sunday, April 29.   Because all of the exhibits in the main zoo will have brand new walkways, the back area will need to be closed during construction for public safety.
The front areas of the zoo not affected by the construction (the Crean Family Farm, the Exploration Outpost activity center, playground, gift shop, Knowlwood Café, maze, Zoofari Express train ride and the Conservation Carrousel) will remain open to the public during the construction project.

The existing asphalt walkways in the zoo are many years old and in poor condition.   There are large cracks from tree roots and uneven surfaces throughout the walkways. The uneven walkway conditions have been noted in the last two Association of Zoos & Aquariums accreditation inspection reports as being inadequate.  The new paths will be smoother and easier for strollers, wheelchairs, and walkers, making sure all pathways are ADA compliant and a good, smooth walk for seniors.
During the two weeks of construction, the existing walkways will be pulverized to provide a base for the new layer.  Reusing the old asphalt significantly reduces the amount of material that would normally go to a landfill.  This "green" process is important to us as part of the Zoo's overall messaging on recycling and conservation of resources.

Deferred maintenance is an issue for many cities during these trying economic times and in Santa Ana, it's no different.  The city has not been able to do this project for several years, and the process of patching and repairing the walkways was no longer satisfactory.  The city turned to the Friends of the Santa Ana Zoo, who were happy to take on this challenge, and secured a grant for $75,000 to cover all of the costs of the project.  The city's Public Works department will do the project management.

We apologize for any inconvenience to our guests during this time.
During the closure of the main zoo exhibits, the front of the zoo will remain open so visitors that do come can see the Family Farm animals, ride the carrousel and train, and visit the gift shop and Knowlwood Café. 
During the construction process, the zoo will charge only $1 admission for everyone 3 years and older.

Here is an approximate map of the construction:  You can see that the Crean Family Farm, Jaguar Maze, Exploration Outpost, Conservation Carousel, Zoofari Express Train, Knowlwoods Cafe, Treetop Toys Gift Store, Playground, and the amphitheater are expected to be open.
Admission will be only $1 for the duration of the construction.

Thank you for pardoning our dust and bearing with us through this very necessary construction, and we'll be reopening the full Zoo at the end of the month with some new and exciting things.

Look for general Zoo information and other important notices, schedules, etc. on our website at:

and follow the Santa Ana Zoo on Facebook and Twitter!


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