Sheikh Zayed Desert Learning Centre
The Sheikh Zayed Desert Learning Centre (SZDLC) is an integral part of the development of the vast Al Ain Wildlife Park & Resort. The overall project involves the redevelopment of the 40-year old Al Ain Zoo to include a wildlife themed safari, destination resort, retail and residential communities. The Desert Learning Centre is a tribute to the late Sheikh Zayed and is an exploration of the natural and cultural history of the Arabian deserts, as well as deserts worldwide.
The SZDLC is both a museum and a science centre containing interactive displays about the UAE’s wildlife and culture. Visitors fly over the Arabian Desert, travel back in time to witness different geological eras, understand the values that drove Sheikh Zayed's conservation principles, experience traditional Bedu life, and measure the impact of their ecological footprints on the fragile ecosystem.
The SZDLC is one of the pilot projects of the UAE's new Estidama environmental design standard and is the first building to achieve a Five Pearl rating at the design phase. The exhibit lighting is designed to meet the new standard and reduce over-all heat loading, energy consumption and maintenance requirements. The design goals were achieved in the exhibit galleries with a combination of daylighting and LSI SPT4-39 and MHLN303 Series ceramic metal halide track-mounted luminaires.
Architect: Chalabi Architects and Partners, Vienna
Exhibit Lighting Design: Eos Lightmedia
Interpretive Planning & Exhibit Design: Aldrich Pears Associates, Vancouver
Exhibit Fabricator: Beck Interiors, London
Lighting Supply & Installation: SI Electric, London