This project sets out to re-establish the relationship between Frankfurt Zoo and the wider city lost when the zoo gave up the classical ‘Gesellschaftshaus’ facing Alfred-Brehm-Platz to west of Frankfurt City centre.
Visitors continue to enter the zoo in front of the neo-classical monolith but a new sculptural form scoops them to the side across an extended entrance plaza and sets them up to enter the animal-park proper in line with one of the historical tree-lined avenues. The new building also gives resolution to the end of the wall that continues around the 11–hectare park with a framed glimpse through to the park from Thuringerstrasse. The entrance accommodation orchestrates the conflicting streams of crowds entering and leaving at the same time and provides for alternative winter and summer arrangements.
Behind the entrance foyer (and viewed from it) are a sequence of spaces for brown bears and spectacle bears arranged to take advantage of the existing mature trees. To the north, back of house functions have been arranged around a new two-storey working courtyard. This project was commissioned from a successful HRA competition entry in 2009 and completed in 2013.