TULSA, Okla. - A groundbreaking was held this morning at the Tulsa Zoo for a new, $3.1 million exhibit to house the zoo's rhinos.
The Mary K. Chapman Rhinoceros Exhibit will replace the outdated 38-year-old facility with a naturalistic, state-of-the-art home for the zoo’s resident white rhinoceroses, Jeannie and Buzbie.
The exhibit will consist of a 3 acre yard and an 8,925 square foot barn facility. The rhinos’ barn will boast many modern features, including sustainable elements, such as a green roof, rammed earth walls, the capacity for harvesting rainwater and straw bale walls, which are energy efficient. The zoo will showcase a model of the exhibit at the ceremony.
The Mary K. Chapman Rhinoceros Exhibit will be located in the African Plains area of the zoo, across from the giraffe exhibit.
“We’re pleased to expand the African Plains area of the zoo with the Mary K. Chapman Rhinoceros Exhibit, a joint project between the City of Tulsa and Tulsa Zoo Management, Inc.,” said Terrie Correll, CEO of Tulsa Zoo Management, Inc. “This new habitat will feature not only our white rhinos, but also other African species, such as antelope and zebra upon completion. It will provide a quality guest experience for learning about rhinos, as well as a state of the art animal facility. This new habitat is the first of several new exhibits that will transform the African section of the zoo. We would like to acknowledge our generous donors who made this project possible: Mary K. Chapman Foundation, Grace and Franklin Bernsen Foundation, City of Tulsa, Founders of Doctors’ Hospital, Cuesta Foundation and Mr. and Mrs. Bob and Kathy West.”
Funding for the exhibit comes from private donors as well as the 1/3 penny sales tax.