Forest Trailhead, Woodland Park Zoo - Exterior

Forest Trailhead
Woodland Park Zoo


Seattle, Washington


Woodland Park Zoo

Collaborators +

Zoo Designer: CLR Design

Structural Engineering: Lund Opsahl, LLC

MEP Engineering: PAE Engineers

Civil Engineering: Mayfly Engineering + Design, PLLC

Landscape Architecture: Walker Macy

Indigenous Education: Tahoma Peak Solutions

Tribal Engagement: Headwater People

Community Engagement: Hummingbird Community Cooperation

Project Size

27,500 square feet

Project Status

In Progress


Targeting LEED New Construction Gold


Architecture, Interior Design

Forest Trailhead is an immersive forest exhibit, transforming the heart of Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo into an inspirational and educational experience that highlights the captivating wildlife of the world’s forests and the effective conservation efforts aimed at preserving these ecosystems. The facility, part of the zoo’s Forests for All campaign, will present a new and hopeful perspective on the future of forests by centering the stories and voices of those leading successful animal conservation initiatives.

This transformative forest exhibit at Woodland Park Zoo will enable guests to explore humanity’s relationship with nature, revealing the remarkable variety of plant and animal life in global forests. By sharing the stories of the communities leading the effort to save the forests and their animal inhabitants, the exhibit will inspire others to take climate and conservation action. On the elevated Canopy Path, visitors will experience the treetops from the perspective of the resident tree kangaroos and red pandas. The Trailhead Pavilion features tree-dwelling reptiles and colorful amphibians in mixed-species groups, showcasing the diversity of life in global forests. Throughout the facility, guests will learn about the impact of their everyday consumer choices on endangered animals and the importance of adopting sustainable habits. The project will encourage action by connecting people with the global communities dedicated to protecting and restoring forests while providing uniquely up-close encounters with wildlife. The Pavilion’s Plaza will serve as a dynamic gathering space for engaging keeper talks and special events, fostering a sense of empowerment among guests by demonstrating their integral role in a broader community that cherishes forests.

Forest Trailhead will ignite visitors’ passion for joining the zoo’s global movement to protect the environment as they immerse themselves in the rich biodiversity of the world’s forests and actively engage with conservation issues.