ZSL London Zoo has announced plans to construct a new £2m penguin pool. Called Penguin Beach, the new facility will be a longer and deeper extension of the current pool. It is set to open in May, and will house the Zoo’s resident population of South American Humboldt and Antarctic Macaroni penguins.
Truth be told, London Zoo hasn’t always done well by our flightless friends. The original penguin pool, designed by Russian emigre Berthold Lubetkin and built in 1931, was fawned over by design enthusiasts for its Modernist stylings but was not well suited to its feathered occupants — walking on concrete hurt their joints, and the pool was too shallow for them to properly dive into.
The birds were moved out in 2004, and the listed structure remains as a water feature. Consider the new pool as reparation for years of forcing the penguins into a beautiful but ill-equipped home.
Photo of Antarctic Macaroni penguin by SoohK in Lens.