A hybrid skyscraper zoo creates exciting city sightseeing over Buenos Aires’ skyline
Influx Studio propose a whole new zoo experience in Buenos Aires inspired by modern safaris, in which visitors drive their own vehicles to observe and photograph wildlife animals roaming freely, rather than viewing them in cages or small enclosures.
Their proposal seeks to contribute to the redefinition of the zoo’s archetype, giving it a new urban function and adding an unexpected bonus to the vertical condition, demanded by the competition’s guidelines: an observation wheel to create an exciting city sightseeing safari over Buenos Aires’ skyline!
Emulating a safari trip, people will board in the cockpits to see animals in vast recreated habitats. The Ferris Wheel added into the vertical zoo will provide a new metropolitan dimension to Puerto Madero’s Reserve waterfront park, attracting an additional mass of visitors and enhancing the Reserve’s recreational and leisure element.
Located in the projection of the visual axe which joins the Reserve area to the national monument, the Obelisk, the Vertical Safari zoo will reach 240 m high, creating an appealing new visual landmark beyond Puerto Madero’s docks (the view is currently blocked by the docks). Turning very slowly, the observation wheel will take 30 minutes to complete a half circuit.
Arriving at the top of the circuit, visitors can make a pause and enjoy sightseeing options at the visitor’s facilities level. It hosts the educational programme and the cafeteria, gift and souvenirs shop etc. That level is suspended into the void of the master volume above the wheel providing various dramatics and unexpected sights to visitors. Conceived as a new kind of building issued of several trends and inspired by worldwide architectural icons, Vertical Safari could be defined as a 21st-century hybrid which merges the skyscraper, the zoo, and the Ferris Wheel into one new ecological urban iconic landmark, encouraging visitors to take action benefiting wildlife and ecosystems.