Zoo looks to address parking pinch

ASHEBORO — High attendance on some spring days has created parking issues for North Carolina Zoo.

The NC Zoo Council heard details of the situation during last week’s meeting.

Zoo director Pat Simmons said there could be plans to expand parking ahead of opening the new Asia exhibit to relieve some of the parking headaches.

The Zoo has issued the following advisory: “For your safety and guest experience, the Zoo may need to limit parking once the lots are full. We typically reopen the parking lots once guests start leaving and spaces open.”

Some of the parking pinches have come from contractors for the Asia exhibit using one of the overflow lots. Additional parking was planned as part of the Asia exhibit, so expediting that could be in the works.

Zoo officials said sunny weekend days logically tend to draw the largest crowds. Carpooling is recommended when possible.

For patrons with options on when to visit, the Zoo typically has lower attendance on Mondays and Tuesdays.

Zoo hours for April through October are 9 a.m.-5 p.m. (closing time is 4 p.m. from November through March). Parking is free.

Also, at the Zoo, the baboon habitat reopening is scheduled for May 24.

Then beginning May 29 through early September, a show featuring trained dogs promoting conservation will be among the daily events at the Zoo.

By Randolph Record