Big New Plans For The Minnesota Zoo

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Minnesota Zoo is going to be going through some pretty big changes over the next 15 or 20 years. That’s if all the elements of a Master Plan go into effect.

Lee Ehmke has been the Zoo’s director for 13 years.

“The short hand is no margin, no mission,” Ehmke said.

Ehmke said they need to attract more people to increase revenue to support the work they are doing at the zoo including conservation efforts and education.

Ehmke said the last three years, they’ve seen record attendance.

“Last year was our all-time high with 1.37 million visitors,” he said.

Zip lines are part of the mix.

“Part of the zoo’s purpose is to connect people to the animals, and we do that in a variety of ways. This will be a little more high energy,” he said.

The Master Plan also calls for an expanded African Trail with lions, giraffes and hippos.

Ehmke said any of the high end attractions will be paid for by private funds and the zoo’s foundation.

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