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Last Updated: Wednesday, 5 April 2006, 12:05 GMT 13:05 UK
Chimp house hopes to become champ
Monkey Heights: Pic Paignton Zoo
Rainwater collected from the roof is used to wash the dens
An eco-friendly enclosure at a Devon zoo has been short listed for a prestigious building award.

Monkey Heights at Paignton Zoo, designed by Kay Elliott architects and zoo staff, uses solar water heating and is clad with quick-growing wood.

The 1.2m exhibit consists of three buildings linked by a raised causeway and is home to various species of monkeys and other small mammals.

It has been nominated for the Built In Quality Awards.

Successful project

Monkey Heights is in the category of "best commercial new build".

Neil Palmer, senior building control officer for Torbay Council, said it was a unique and successful project.

"The zoo's flair for design and commitment to the welfare of its animals has resulted in an exhibit that I'm sure will be enjoyed and admired by visitors for many years to come," he said.

Rainwater is collected from the 300sq-m roof area and is used for washing down the animals' dens.

Neil Bemment, curator of mammals, said: "I'm really pleased with how Monkey Heights has turned out. It's definitely a project to which other collections can aspire."

The award ceremony will take place in Torquay on 20 April.


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