New Manila Zoo will be 'best in Asia', Mayor Moreno says as construction starts

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, July 25) — Manila Mayor Francisco "Isko Moreno" Domagoso has high hopes for the new or "Bagong Manila Zoo" as the city begins its construction.

Moreno said he sees the ₱1.73-billion project to eventually rival Singapore Zoo, currently known as the world's best rainforest zoo.

"You are going to witness this, we are going to build in the near future the best zoo in Asia," said Moreno in a statement during Saturday's groundbreaking ceremony.

The city government said the redevelopment, which will cover 51,000 square meters, will include a new veterinary hospital, new animal habitats, gardens, a museum, a restaurant and a new parking area. Officials said they hope to complete the makeover in 19 months.

The zoo has been closed to the public since January 2019 after the Environment Department identified it as a major pollutant of Manila Bay. Officials said new zoo will have its own sewage treatment plant.