The creative team at Neptunus have built an exclusive venue for immersive dinosaur experience in London, Dinosaurs in the Wild.
Billed as ‘the greatest safari ever’, this live-action event showcases what life was like 67 million years ago surrounded by prehistoric animals.
However, with no permanent building in the capital available to accommodate such a large show over a long period of time, organisers turned to temporary structure specialists Neptunus to create a bespoke venue where families can experience ‘live’ dinosaurs as they have never seen them before.
Neptunus constructed a temporary building with reinforced flooring and load-bearing roofs.
Managing director April Trasler said: “We certainly weren’t overawed by our dinosaur challenge. Although of course the creatures aren’t really inside our structure, the mammoth amount of sophisticated equipment required in the building to provide the immersive high-tech experience is colossal – and our temporary buildings are certainly capable of accommodating all the very heavy and specialist technology installed inside.”
It took an eight-strong team from Neptunus just three weeks to build the innovative venue on the Greenwich Peninsula, close to London’s O2 Arena, utilising the company’s state-of-the-art Evolution technology.
The Evolution Structure covers 3,400sqm and stands eight metres tall – incorporating black-out skins to provide a dark interior, with flooring adaptations to cope with the show’s exceptionally heavy installations.
The venue houses two ‘time machines’ and a ‘dinosaur research station, TimeBase 67 – built 67 million years in the past’. Visitors and their guides tour a range of laboratories and witness wonders like dinosaurs hatching, an autopsy on a giant Pachycephalosaurus and an observation lookout where dinosaurs roam in the wild all around them.
1,600sqm of Alu Hall structures are constructed behind the temporary building to accommodate the back-of-house support team, while a 600-square-metre Alure Globe structure links to the Evolution to form a foyer and reception area for visitors.
The Dinosaur in the Wild experience is the brainchild of creative director Tim Haines, the inspiration behind the BBC’s award-winning Walking with Dinosaurs documentary and the ITV drama Primeval.
Dinosaurs in the Wild uses dramatic storytelling, high-tech animation and exciting 3D audio-visual effects. More than 100 artists and technicians create the experience which features eight prehistoric giants, including the iconic Tyrannosaurus rex, the three-horned Triceratops, the towering Alamosaurus and the amazing Quetzalcoatlus, the largest creature ever to fly.
Trish McClenaghan, event manager for Dinosaurs in the Wild, said: “The temporary structure is really great. From the visitor’s point of view, there is no difference in the experience in this temporary building than for the events we staged at the NEC in Birmingham and EventCity in Manchester, it is just the same. The Dinosaurs in the Wild experience has been designed to be staged in different places and as the temporary structures are so good, it means that we have the ability to take the show anywhere.”