As an integral piece to the Virginia Aquarium & Owls Creek Master Plan, the Virginia Aquarium Foundation and Virginia Beach Parks & Recreation Department requested design and development proposals for an aerial adventure park near the aquarium’s Mash Pavilion and across the Owl Creek estuary. This park would be an attraction for tourists and local visitors aiming to explore and learn about the ecosystem of trees while gaining confidence, having fun, and staying physically fit. Commissioned by several renowned ropes course and aerial park companies, WPL inputted at multiple levels into the overall design. For one of the proposals, WPL showed how the adventure park would integrate with the overall aquarium plans for expansion. This adventure park would also incorporate elements from the City’s coastal conservation garden planned for construction immediately following the park’s opening. Up to 300 visitors at a time will be able to explore the trees from all tropic levels up to sixty-feet high. The park plans call for several different zip lines, a ship with rigging, a power fan tower, a children’s labyrinth, and a canopy path.
The Adventure Park at the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center’s grand opening took place on Friday, May 30th as many eager faces were ready to get started on the zip line course. The design team, Outdoor Ventures and WPL landscape architects designed the phased, seven acre park so participants could soar through the wooded area over Owl Creek’s tidal waterways. The family-friendly course contains trails of varying levels of difficulty and aims to bring the aquarium’s guests outdoors and teach them to appreciate the outdoors.