Monarto Zoo, Lions 360

Lions 360
Monarto Zoo
Fixed Amount
$1 Million


  • Winner 2018 MBA Excellence in Civil / Engineering Constructions

Monarto Zoo is one of the largest open-range zoos in the world. Construction of their Lions 360 experience — the only 360 degree lion experience in Australia – was successfully delivered through the Sarah project team’s innovative solution focused approach, high level relationship management skills and capability within unusual and challenging environments.

A one-of-a-kind, secure 360 degree viewing cage and safari vehicle feature, accessible via a 16 metre concrete tunnel, the attraction allows the general public to observe the zoo’s lions at breathtakingly close proximity.

Working within a lions’ enclosure, safety was absolutely paramount. And with a fixed launch date, so was the ability to solve problems quickly. Project Manager, Peter Golotta, explained that, “by taking a collaborative approach with the client and contractors, we were able to fast track issue resolution and stick to program.”

Using innovative 3D modelling methodology, Sarah Constructions delivered a superior product with precision installation. The Australia-first 360 degree lion encounter opened to the public on time and received considerable positive attention online and in the press. Lions 360 will help Monarto Zoo to continue their work as a conservation charity raising awareness and saving lions from extinction.

“The Zoo was spoilt with Sarah Constructions enthusiasm towards the project which with focussed attention to detail resolved all challenges in a positive and desired outcome”.

Elaine Benstead - Chief Executive

Delivering Australia’s first 360 degree lion encounter

Monarto Zoo 360 Experience
Monarto Zoo Tunnel 360 Experience Constructions
Feeding the Lions at Monarto Zoo 360 Experience
the Lions at Monarto Zoo 360 Experience
the Lions at Monarto Zoo 360 Experience

Design Challenges and Creative Solutions

  • Certain major elements of the design were based on products selected some years ago, which had since become obsolete. Sarah’s excellent working relationship with the architects helped to accommodate required design changes.
  • Working within a zoo environment, in a field of lions, required strict contractor safety and guidelines. As well as increasing the amount of fencing, the Sarah project team discussed safety matters at each site meeting, which were thoroughly policed throughout the project.
  • When additional earthworks threatened delays, human resources were increased and works continued out of hours to deliver on time.

Client Outcomes

  • To ensure optimum levels of quality, the cage was built inside an indoor workshop, then assembled later on site with the help of 3D modelling. This reduced site installation time and produced a superior product for the client.
  • The lions required a period of time to condition to the new construction prior to the public opening. Strict adherence to program meant this deadline was met, despite potential delays.
  • The Lions 360 experience opened on 13th November 2017. The launch event was attended by the Minister of Tourism and other members of federal and state government, plus the media, who provided a range of positive feedback.

Sarah Value-Add

  • The 3D modelling and extensive 3D surveying on site, plus collaboration with subcontractors, ensured precision installation, issue forecasting and prevention.
  • The Sarah team’s experience managing construction in complex operational environments enabled works to be expertly staged and re-programmed to suit the zoo’s opening times, delivering a safer and more efficient process for all.
  • Timelapse footage created by Sarah Constructions of the build was provided to the client at no extra cost for use in marketing and communications.

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