When Todd Mitchell comments about work these days, he says, “That place is a zoo!”  He’s not kidding though.  His current job site is literally a zoo.

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Welcome sign at Henry Doorly’s Omaha Zoo

In 2016, Todd – an independent builder and authorized representative for Timberhaven Log & Timber Homes in Frankfort, Indiana – embarked on a multi-phase construction project at The Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium in Omaha, Nebraska.  Throughout this process, Todd has served and continues to serve as the lead contractor for the conventional framing and log & heavy timber elements of the zoo’s two-year expansion project.  Timberhaven Log & Timber Homes of Middleburg, Pennsylvania, supplied the construction materials and specialty log & timbers for this venture.

Omaha Zoo – African Grasslands Log & Timber Project

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The heavy timber portico at the Tusker Grill*

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The heavy timber portico at the Tusker Grill

 

 

 

 

 

 

The initial phase of construction commenced in the African Grasslands – an outdoor grassland habitat for African wildlife.  Todd and his crew performed the custom log work the African Lodge, an elephant shade structure, giraffe feeding station, hand-washing stations, an interior dining hall and an exterior dining hall, amphitheater, and a lagoon bridge.

*Note: The same Outlast Q8 Log Oil that we use on our log homes is environmental-friendly enough for animal exposure. In the above, left photo, Todd is shown applying Outlast Q8 Log Oil to the timbers.

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Custom log work at the African Lodge

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Custom log work at the African Lodge

 

 

 

 

 

 

Later in the year Todd Mitchell began work in the Africa Exhibits.  Africa Phase I projects included a goat corral, pavilion, and a home for the mercats. Throughout the two phases, multiple sections of log fence/view railing were built.  These fences range in length from 25 ft. to more than 350 ft.

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Pavilion heavy timber framework

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Roof sheathing installed on pavilion

 

 

 

 

 

 

A helicopter hanger, bongo viewing structure, and sable viewing structure were constructed in the Africa Phase II Exhibit.  View railing and demonstration-area railing were also assembled by Todd.

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Heavy timber view railing at demonstration area

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Prairie dog trellis

 

 

 

 

 

 

Omaha Zoo: Conservation Academy & Children’s Zoo

Current construction efforts are focused on the Conservation Academy & Children’s Zoo.  This area’s main feature is a massive tree house (a fabricated metal tree finished with concrete colors and textures to appear life-like). The tree itself will be surrounded by 8 tiers of decking.  This is any kids’ nirvana.  There will also be three string bridges, a prairie dog trellis, and a goat holding building that is attached to a suspended goat walk and swinging bridge – an idyllic atmosphere for the goats as well.  The children’s zoo is scheduled to open in the summer of 2017.

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Fabricated tree house in the future Children’s Zoo

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Goat holding building with “goat walk”

 

 

 

 

 

 

According to the Omaha-World Herald, this is the zoo’s largest project ever. Todd Mitchell and Timberhaven Log & Timber Homes are elated to have an opportunity to be part of this monumental endeavor.

To contact Timberhaven: Call #855-306-5678 or email info@timberhavenloghomes.com.
To contact, Builder, Todd Mitchell: Call #765-652-3783 or email mitchellbros@geetel.net.