LOS ANGELES : Zoo Officials Unveil Natural Habitats Plan

The Los Angeles City Council on Tuesday got a glimpse of the city's zoo in the year 2000, as zoo officials described a new master plan calling for animals to live in their natural settings.

The blueprint calls for nearly $300 million in sweeping improvements to exhibits and the zoo's aging infrastructure--changes that will be paid for with public and private funds.

Among the more notable changes will be the addition of "interpretive centers" that look out onto animals grazing in their natural habitats, and a tram to take visitors around the compound, said Zoo Director Mark Goldstein. The habitats will be divided into nine theme areas, including an African savanna and a South American forest.

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