Belle Isle Nature Center reopens after $2.5 million makeover
The Belle Isle Nature Center has announced its reopening to the public after a $2.5 million dollar renovation that offers new habitats and programs for children and adults.
The indoor space was closed to the public for more than two years.
"The Belle Isle Nature Center is truly unique," said Amy Greene, nature center director for the Detroit Zoological Society, which operates the Belle Isle Nature Center and the Detroit Zoo. "We've completely reimagined a new nature center which puts the focus on urban wildlife. We want people to feel that nature is where we already are. We just have to notice and appreciate it."
"What's different now is a renewed focus on Detroit nature," said Greene. "Most or all of our programming really emphasizes the space we share with other living things."
Greene said that the all new exhibits and animal habitats are designed to celebrate urban wildlife and to show the intersection of the built and natural environments.
"You don't have to go somewhere to be part of nature," Greene said. "Nature is all around us all the time, even when you live right in the heart of the city, right? And our role here is to reveal that in a really creative way."
Among the many highlights of the renovation are the Frog and Toad Crawl-through, the Sewer Tunnel-Walk-through, and an interactive exhibit that lets a visitor observe an active beehive close up.
The Nature Center offers community and educational programming. A schedule of events can be found here.
The Nature Center is located on five acres at the northeastern tip of Belle Isle State Park in Detroit. It is open daily with no entrance fee. A Recreation Passport must be purchased to drive your vehicle onto Belle Isle.