Wilhelma Zoo Stuttgart – Enclosure for African Apes

Structural Designer

Weischede, Herrmann und Partner

Client Name

Vermögen und Bau Baden-Württemberg, Amt Stuttgart


Stuttgart, Germany

Images: © Svenja-Bockhop / officium design engineering


The internal accommodation of the new enclosure for African apes takes the form of an artificial ridge.  This reinforced concrete spine building follows and S-shape on plan between groves of trees integrated into the zoo landscaping: with its thermal mass contributing passively to the internal climate control.  Its solidity sits in contrast to the lightweight stainless steel mesh of the 2200m2 external bonobo enclosure supported on 13 pylons which also serve as climbing frames for the apes.

Judge's comment:

The use and expression of the structural materials to create variety in the enclosure and spaces, has been executed with great skill across and extensive undulating forms that transition into the landscape.

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