For centuries, the white elephants have been regarded among the kingdoms of South-East Asia as representing peace and wealth and as a sign of the good future awaiting the country.
As an initiative of Four Paws International the proposal was conceived and prepared on 30th of October 2017 in Yangon by arch. Ivan Tonchev with the assistance of the Four Paws team.
This proposal represents an initial study on the possibilities for the improvement of white elephants’ life, logistics conditions and visitor’s experience.
Summary of the proposal:
The Royal White Elephant Garden in Yangon houses three white elephants, two females and one bull.
The entire area of the facility is 14 acres made up of the elephant shelter, guest area, staff accommodation and of natural vegetation.
The elephants stay under a purposly made shelter on chains most of the time. Visitors are only able to view the elephants from distance.
The proposal provides for:
- Positivе effect on the living environment for the elephants
- Enhancement of the visitors’ experience
- Clear and distinctive entrances and pathsways for the visitors, religious procedings, service and maintenance
- Improved conditions for maintenance and health care of the elephants
Proposed is to achieve these goals by:
- Creation of two enclosures – one approx. 2.2acres for the bull and one 2.8acres for the two females. The enclosures will be built utilizing natural barriers, bull proof fencing and electrification fences, where the elephants have the freedom to move without restriction
- A large covered area developed for both bull and cows as well as a working area for veterinary care.
- A service area directly linked to the covered area and independently connected to the adjasent road
- Creation of a walkway along the perimeter of the elephant enclosures for visitors
- Creation of a wooden bridge walkway that spans across from the outside of the enclosures to atop a viewing platform in the centre giving the visitors a bird’s eye view of the elephants below. This is inspired by the famous wooden U-Bein bridge in the Mandalay area.
- Developing an elevated restaurant area for the visitors overlooking enclosures from the south side.