MN Zoo Begins Construction on Worlds Longest Pedestrian Loop

MN Zoo Pedestrian Loop

First Segment of the Future World’s Longest Elevated Pedestrian Loop Raised into Place

(Apple Valley, MN) —  Oct. 13, 2022  — A big “step” in the construction of the Minnesota Zoo’s Treetop Trail was taken earlier today as the official first segment of the trail was raised into place.

Members of the PCL Construction team hoisted a 20-foot by 8-foot piece of the trail, complete with railing, onto the Zoo’s original monorail track using a crane/boom truck. This piece, one of hundreds to be placed on the project, will be the first segment of the Treetop Trail that Zoo guests will walk upon when they enter from the Zoo’s Central Plaza.

“Today marks a major milestone for construction of the Treetop Trail. With this first completed section being raised, we are seeing, for the first time, the true transformation of the closed monorail into the world’s longest elevated pedestrian loop – allowing our guests and partners to visualize how this momentous project will further immerse them in nature,” said Minnesota Zoo Director John Frawley. “Thanks to the hard work and expertise of our staff and construction partners, we remain on track to open the Treetop Trail next summer and share this gift with Minnesotans and visitors from all over the world. We are grateful to all who have supported this project generously, including the State of Minnesota and our Treetop Trail donors.”

“PCL Construction is excited to celebrate this project milestone at the Minnesota Zoo Treetop Trail, said Trent Johnson, District Manager for PCL. “We have partnered with the zoo on several endeavors since 2014 and are proud to lead construction on this project that makes use of the existing monorail structure and will offer amazing views to zoo visitors. We can’t wait for the community to enjoy the Treetop Trail for generations to come.”

Scheduled for completion in the summer of 2023, the 1.25-mile Treetop Trail will be the world’s longest elevated pedestrian loop bringing guests up to 32 feet above the ground and providing them with an immersive experience in nature. Integrating into the monorail track’s existing footprint, the Treetop Trail will be the ultimate reuse construction project.

For more information on Minnesota Zoo’s Treetop Trail, follow its progress, and contribute to the project, please visit


The Minnesota Zoo is a year-round destination providing a window into the natural world. With hundreds of species of animals, worldwide conservation efforts, and acres of scenic beauty, the Zoo is a resource to connect people, animals, and the natural world to save wildlife. The Minnesota Zoo is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and an institutional member of the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA). For more information visit


Upon its completion in the summer of 2023, the 1.25-mile Treetop Trail at the Minnesota Zoo will be the world’s longest elevated pedestrian loop. An inspired repurposing of the Zoo’s original monorail trail, the walking path will bring guests up to 32 feet above the ground providing them a bird’s eye view and access to hundreds of acres of hardwood forest, wetlands, wildlife, and, of course, the Zoo’s beloved animals. The mission of the Treetop Trail is to provide a year-round, welcoming, and accessible journey into nature for people of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities through self-guided experiences as well as special events and programming.

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