$14.5 million Cameron Park Zoo bond issue proposal

A rendering of the penguin exhibit. (Cameron Park Zoo)

McLennan County voters will decide whether to approve a proposed $14.5 million bond issue to fund expansion and improvements at Waco’s Cameron Park Zoo.

Officials say the bond issue would not result in a tax increase and that any additional operational expenses resulting from the expansion would be covered by revenue from a $2 increase in admission fees and rising attendance.

The proceeds from the bond issue would fund:

A $4.4 million South African black-footed penguin exhibit.
An $8 million education and veterinary complex
A $100,000 commissary
A $375,000 renovation of the hoofstock barn.

The zoo opened in 1993 and has more than 1,600 animals and 70 exhibits spread across 52 acres.

Since opening it has welcomed more than 4.9 million guests.