ABOVE: Lost Kingdom at the Tulsa Zoo
St. Louis, MO, USA – A new year for the growing St. Louis design firm PGAV Destinations signals an exciting forecast of domestic and unprecedented international growth following a record year.
“Now that we’ve witnessed the healthy rebound of the international economy, we’re seeing significant capital investment by owners around the world in new attractions, exhibits, and original destinations,” said Mike Konzen, principal and chair of the industry-leading design firm. “This has energized new strategies and opportunities within our market, and has contributed to a surge in great new opportunities in the coming years.”
Many of the firm’s long-standing clients have initiated significant, multi-year projects in recent months, while numerous new destinations have signed PGAV on to help develop successful master plans and world-class additions to their popular destinations.
Throughout 2016, construction will continue on Tulsa Zoo’s Lost Kingdom. When the new attraction opens in 2017, it will feature lush gardens and settings inspired by ancient Asian cultures, and will be home to snow leopards, endangered tigers, red pandas, binturongs, komodo dragons, and numerous other Asian species. In addition, construction will be underway for Big Bear Alpine Zoo, California’s only wild animal rescue and rehabilitation facility of its kind, while exciting details regarding Gulfport’s new Mississippi Aquarium are soon to be made public.
The coming year will also see a significant growth in PGAV Destinations’ impact on its local St. Louis community. While for decades the firm has consulted for and designed attractions for many of the region’s destinations – including the Saint Louis Zoo, Missouri Botanical Garden, and Anheuser Busch – 2016 will see a re-energized, hands-on impact on the St. Louis community. PGAV will be continuing its successful PGAVIA program, which assists in placing PGAV staff in great environmental and conservation volunteer opportunities around the region. The program has also been promoting awareness and activism regarding the illegal, global elephant ivory trade, and will be participating in this year’s Mardi Gras parade to continue those efforts.
Most notably, PGAV Destinations recently pledged $125,000 and the volunteer time of its leading designers in supporting Washington University’s Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts Alberti Program. “As we celebrated our 50th anniversary this year, we’ve been exploring opportunities for PGAV Destinations and our community to thrive and grow together,” said Konzen. “The Alberti Program is an ideal opportunity to share our passion with segments of our community that have limited resources, and inspire growth.” The program provides lectures, field trips, and projects promoting the hands-on education of architecture and design for St. Louis region school children.
The coming year will also see a strong continuation and expansion of PGAV Destinations’ research on the attractions industry, most often published in the firm’s quarterly magazine, Destinology. A brand new, annual trend forecasting study is due out later this quarter, produced in conjunction with H2R Market Research, as well as a research-centric publication which will continue the series of The Art of the Family Vacation and Storytelling: It Can Change Your Mind. PGAV will additionally continue to expand its Destinology brand at numerous industry conferences this year, including ASTC, IAAPA, AZA, and more.
There are many more exciting developments and projects soon to be announced by PGAV Destinations. Keep up with the latest destination development news on the firm’s new award-winning website, Facebook page, and Twitter feed.