Toronto Zoo – Orangutan Exhibit

Scope: Piles and Lagging, Caissons, Micropiles

The Project

The Orangutan Outdoor Exhibit project focuses on providing two (2) new outdoor habitats, with improvements to the existing indoor habitats, to add vast climbing opportunities to improve the living conditions for the Toronto Zoo orangutans.

The Challenge

Design, supply and installation of a permanent retaining wall enclosure for the Sumatran orangutans including caisson and micropile foundations for the new building and structures. Access to the site was limited and required logistical pre-planning due to restricted loads over the existing bridges leading to the project site within the Toronto Zoo. The original plan was to install a shoring system that required multiple platform and working elevations. The geotechnical report identified significant cobbles and boulders which can be very challenging for drilling.

The Solution

Maple Site Solutions Inc. was able to map out a plan and co-ordinate logistics and load restriction requirements without the need to upgrade existing bridges or a requirement for oversized crane lifts to access the site. In addition to the working levels for the final retaining wall elevations, Maple Site Solutions Inc. was able to design/build a solution that would reduce multiple stage requirements to a continuous piling operation followed by fluid excavation and backfill operation. To maintain location and drilling through significant cobbles and boulders encountered in the ground, Maple Site Solutions Inc. increased the diameter of the smaller foundation elements and also utilized special drilling tools allowing us to drill through or extract the obstructions.