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Naturalized shoreline at the Nature Boardwalk at Lincoln Park Zoo, a WRD Environmental project

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Nature Boardwalk at Lincoln Park Zoo, Chicago, IL

Client Profile

Lincoln Park Zoo connects people with nature by providing a free, family-oriented wildlife experience in the heart of Chicago and by advancing the highest quality of animal care, education, science and conservation. Shaw Environmental & Infrastructure, the lead on this project and a subsidiary of The Shaw Group, specializes in industrial and municipal construction and environmental services involving infrastructure and remediation.

  • Create a “slice of prairie in the big city” by transforming the much-loved yet degraded South Pond area into an urban wildlife habitat
  • Enhance the visitor experience with expanded educational opportunities
  • Improve the water quality of the South Pond
Sample Results
  • A 14-acre landscape that re-creates a native Midwestern, self-sustaining ecosystem, featuring an array of prairie plants and 100 new trees
  • A living classroom that engages families, schoolchildren and teachers in environmental learning
  • A re-engineered pond with naturalized shorelines and depths that welcome wildlife
  • A City of Chicago GreenWorks Award, a Design Excellence Award from AIA Chicago, a Conservation & Native Landscaping Award from the US EPA and Chicago Wilderness, and far-reaching media attention

Learn more about Nature Boardwalk at Lincoln Park Zoo. 

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Signage at the Nature Boardwalk at Lincoln Park Zoo, where environmental education is a priority

The self-sustaining ecosystem at the Nature Boardwalk at Lincoln Park Zoo