Author Topic: New ZOO Idea?  (Read 1487 times)

Ocklawaha

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New ZOO Idea?
« on: January 23, 2008, 10:29:39 PM »
Wonder if anyone else has thought of these ideas.

Since Marineland of Florida closed and became a simple Marineland Dolphin experience (which isn't doing all so well), and since they completely bulldozed the entire 1930's marine studios complex, including the historical markers. What if we brought it home to Jacksonville?

Oklahoma City has a similar Marine park within the massive zoo and seems to me we would be a natural home for MARINELAND AT JACKSONVILLE ZOO... We promote the dolphin guys down south, they promote the aquarium and shows in Jacksonville. We have the budget to do things with that the smallish private corporation will never have and we could create some really cool first class hands on exhibits. For example, Oklahoma and the Old Marineland had undersea walks, where you looked from under rock ledges into the bottom of the sea... INCREDIBLE. Oklahoma has a mountain stream, I don't know what it is made of but it looks real, and feels like rock, with rock pieces, loose rock, fish, shellfish, weeds and all. It's a child height and they walk along with 2 or 3 young guides and can touch the muscles, the fish, turtles, crayfish etc... Plop a big major hotel right at Hecksher and the Zoo, with that I-95 connection, and we'd be in the tourism business like never before.

The ZOO Railroad (you knew I had to go there right?) was once famous in itself. Seaboard, Southern Atlantic Coast Line and Florida East Coast all had mini-scale trains at the zoo railroad and they traveled over a line a mile or more long. Then they sold them off, and cut out all the rides. Then got a junk train for awhile, then finally built a decent railroad again. This time they backed into a size that many real railroads in pioneer Florida once had. 2' and 3' gauge was popular in pioneer country. The famous tourist trains in Colorado, New Mexico, Maine and the mountains of California are in these gauges. Hummm? What if our zoo railroad became a collection of REAL, Knott's Berry Farm like, railroad equipment, to become a museum and attraction within an attraction?

Anyone else want to add to these or comment?


Ocklawaha

Charles Hunter

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Re: New ZOO Idea?
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2008, 11:10:40 PM »
Sounds very interesting.  How much space would the marine exhibits need?
Also, I've heard (I think it was in one of the TEE legal ads in the paper) that a hotel is planned along the north side of Zoo Parkway (not Heckscher, sorry) between 9A and that first creek, near the (current) cruise terminal.  Not right at the zoo, but not far off - once it is built.  But a hotel near the Zoo would be good too - convenient to I-95.

Jason

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Re: New ZOO Idea?
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2008, 04:28:09 PM »
A hotel is planned as part of a mixed use complex.

Great idea Ock. I wonder if the zoo has the extra space?