Lincoln Construction new contractor for Pt. Defiance facility

Tacoma Metropolitan Park District Commissioners have awarded a contract to Lincoln Construction Inc. of Spanaway to build a new Animal Health Care Facility at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium.
The environmentally friendly building is the first of several major construction projects to be undertaken with the $35 million bond issue approved by Pierce County voters in 199.
Construction is expected to begin in a few weeks and be completed by next fall.
The hospital will have treatment rooms, a surgical suite, laboratory and diagnostic facilities, an observation area for tour groups, animal quarantine and holding areas, administrative spaces, a commissary and storage.
Not only will the hospital have more sophisticated equipment, but it will be situated much closer to the animal exhibits, reducing the time and distance required for transporting animals for care.
Dr. Holly Reed, zoo veterinarian, already is using the new equipment paid for with bond money, including ultrasound, endoscope and laprascope – all of which allow for less invasive diagnostic and surgical procedures.
The zoo has also acquired a fully equipped vet “ambulance” that allows the staff to respond more quickly to emergencies.
“We are just light years ahead of where we’ve been,” said Reed. “I can’t tell you how excited I am.”
The building, designed by the Seattle-based Boxwood architectural firm, will feature state-of-the-art water drainage and collection system, natural lighting, solar-powered water heating, engineered lumber products that utilize recycled materials and “living roof” complete with plantings.
The roof will hold and filter rain runoff, which will cascade in waterfall fashion down one side of the building into a collecting pool, then run down a gravel bed into another pool with an open-bottom catch basin.
A cistern and pump in the catch basin will allow rainwater to be harvested and reused for irrigation.
Lincoln submitted the lowest bid for the building, at $1.99 million.
Park commissioners have allocated a total of $3.4 million for the project.
Future projects include new mixed species exhibits for tiger, tapir, babirusa, snow leopard, gibbon, otter and anoa; a Kids Zone with play and activity areas, animal exhibit, seating and viewing area; new Wild Wonders Theater and Animal Outreach Facility; forest trail boardwalk; a new cafe; renovation of the existing entry and gift shop; and new classrooms.