LynchesRiverPark, Interpretive Center


Plans developed together with ZINC Projects include the Environmental Discovery Center and the Tree Top Canopy Walk. The center also will feature a various educational designed to encourage people to become “Naturalists” as a means to stimulate lifelong learning.

Click “Lynches River Park” in “projects design” to go through related posts.

Lynches Official Opening


Lynches River County Park Environmental Discovery Center (EDC) opened Friday Feb. 22, 2008 with praise from the Effingham community, South Carolina business leaders and elected officials.

Plans developed together with ZINC Projects include the Environmental Discovery Center and the Tree Top Canopy Walk. The center also will feature a various educational designed to encourage people to become “Naturalists” as a means to stimulate lifelong learning.

Click “Lynches River Park” in “projects design” to go through related posts.


Lynches River County Park Environmental Discovery Center is nestled along the cypress and water tupelo along the scenic Lynches River. It features a canopy walk suspended over the wetlands approaching the river. The 250-squared-meter (2700-sq.-ft.) EDC houses a Nature Lab, Veranda Observatory and Briefing Room. Each is equipped with tools and equipment to facilitate citizen science: the ongoing monitoring of the park ecosystems and environment. EDC Coordinator Teresa Simons commented that “visitors will observe, measure and experience nature for themselves.” The center’s Briefing Room has real time environmental monitoring of soil, air, and water and weather conditions.

The 328-ft. canopy walk is a combination of ground-supported walkway, tree-supported observation platforms and cable-supported bridges, starting from the platform of EDC Veranda Observatory.

Lake City native, national business leader and philanthropist Darla Moore said: “Today, we celebrate the opening of this incredible environmental discovery center right in the middle of our own rural Pee Dee region.” Moore congratulated the EDC Steering Committee for the realization of their vision and commented on the importance of public and private partnerships to enact economic change in the region. She also complimented the architecture and design of the center which re-used siding and flooring from a soon to be destroyed century old tobacco barn.

Lynches “EDC” soon to be open


Im Rohbau: Die nach unseren Spezifikationen geplante Innenraumstruktur des neuen Centers. Umgesetzt vor Ort von einem lokalen Planungsbüro, das die Ausführung, Konstuktion und Bauüberwachung übernommen hat.

Visitors to Lynches River County Park will soon enjoy stimulating “hands-in” experiences, at the Environmental Discovery Center which is now set to open in early 2008.

Lynches River Park offers people the unique opportunity for meaningful discovery in their own backyard. Visitors to Lynches River will enjoy stimulating “hands-in” experiences, which will set apart from more common park experiences. They will explore nature where it is, rather than read about models and artifacts from nature. They will use tools to explore actual natural artifacts and processes closely and intimately where they occur. Intimate and up-close encounters with nature will inspire visitors of all ages to act as scientists: to observe, to explore, to record, to compare, to appreciate and most importantly to carry their excitement and new knowledge into their everyday lives. And it is the unique nature of these experiences that will put Lynches River Park “on the map!”

Lynches River Park: Content

Picture: Map Table – © 2007 Claus Laemmle + ZINC Projects

The intent is for the visitor to gain an understanding of the ecosystems in the park from the view of the worm in the ground, to the bird’s eye view in the top of the trees. The exhibits available at the EDC will be ever-changing and designed to engage visitors in the scientific process. Some of the featured activities include:

TREE TOP CANOPY WALK: You’ll have a bird’s eye view from the forest canopy as you traverse the Tree Top Canopy Walk extending from the platform at the rear of the building to a sturdy Willow Oak and continuing on to a majestic Cypress.

MAP TABLE: A back lit topographic map of the park and river system will highlight places of interest and routes to explore.

WEATHER OBSERVATIONS: Visitors can view live weather data as well as historical trends measured at different locations around the Environmental Discovery Center. Measurements include air and water temperature, soil moisture, wind speed and direction, and barometric pressure.

NATURE LAB TRADING AREA: Expand your collection of rocks, insects, and other natural specimens by trading with the EDC! Bring us a natural item for trade. You will be awarded points based on the item’s quality, rarity and your knowledge of it. Points can be saved or used to trade for another item.

BIRD WATCHING: Help us document sightings of various species using spotting scopes, binoculars, digital cameras, and field guides. The Raven Exhibit software from Cornell Lab of Ornithology allows visitors to explore bird vocalizations through visualization.

LYNCHES RIVER STORIES: This elegant and interactive display allows visitors to view and listen to stories of personal experiences on the river. The all-in-one computer with touch screen technology will be housed in the façade of a tobacco barn, a historically significant structure in Florence County.

GPS ACTIVITIES: Visitors will assist EDC staff in recording significant locations of park observations with handheld GPS units. GPS units may also be used for locating several geocaches on park premises.

Lynches “EDC” construction site


Die ersten Schritte für das neue Environmental Discovery Center “EDC” sind gemacht! Als Startpunkt und – nach einem Rundgang mit einer Kette von Naturerlebnissen zum “Abfeiern” und “Nacharbeiten” des gesehenen dient ein Gebäude, das von uns entworfen, unauffällig zwischen den Bäumen stehen wird. Neben den üblichen Funktionen wie Empfang, Ticketing etc. wird es aber auch Platz für Workshops und Labore (hauptsächlich für Schulklassen und angemeldete Gruppen) sowohl im Gebäude als auch auf mehreren erhöhten Terassen bieten.

Lynches River Park: Southern Forest

© 2007 Claus Laemmle, Tom Semadeni – “Southern Forest Concept”

In the spring of 2005 the Lynches River Park Steering Committee (Committee), formed with representation from Florence County, SC Natural Resources and interested citizens, engaged ZINC Projects (ZINC) to propose plans and alternatives for the development of enhanced visitor experiences at the Lynches River Park (Park). In June 2005 several plans and concepts were presented including an interpretive facility, a canopy walkway and a naturalized “Southern Forest” (Naturalization).

The resulting Visitor Experience Master Plan stresses that the development of the Park is a “grow as you go” process: The park will mimic nature in its development. Like the growth rings of a tree, the pattern of development will vary over a series of years. Some years much will be accomplished and other years will serve as opportunities to reflect, plan and determine the next phase of growth. The Naturalization was to consist of enhanced planted areas where visitors could experience the natural wild flora of the Pee Dee region. It was to be a place consistent with the Committee’s direction to stimulate a responsible, caring attitude towards the natural assets of the region. The Naturalization would be located in those spots where the soil and water regimes would support particular varieties of plant material. Naturalization was to be done at minimum cost and with broad involvement of the public.

The Committee approved the above proposals and ZINC coordinated discussions to ensure that the proposed structures, walkways and Naturalization were mutually supportive and consistent.

In November of 2005 the authors, as part of the ZINC team, lived on the site and met with helpful individuals and groups to formulate this Plan. This Plan was edited and modified using input from Committee members and experts in March 2007.

Lynches River Park Project completes funding effort

(FLORENCE, SC) Florence County is a step closer to getting its Environmental Discovery Center and Tree Top Canopy Walk built at Lynches River County Park.

U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint presented a $95,000 check from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to the county Wednesday for the project. In presenting the check, DeMint said the project is more than an education and recreation effort. “This project demonstrates world class creativity. Some folks could look at this project and ask “What does this have to do with economic development,” DeMint said. “But I know from my years in marketing that sometimes it’s a little thing that sets an area apart, and I think this is going to be one of them.”

Plans developed by ZINC Projects include the Environmental Discovery Center and the Tree Top Canopy Walk. The center also will feature a various educational designed to encourage people to become “Naturalists” as a means to stimulate lifelong learning.

“The Environmental Discovery Center Committee has envisioned a center that will provide a learning experience that will be ever changing and will leave the visitors with a desire to return,” said Sterling Sadler, Chairperson of the Interpretive Center Committee.

The project is designed to bring visitors to the tree tops of the 676-acre park.

Lynches River Park


Das grobe Konzept steht! Nach vielen Diskussionen mit dem Board und den inhaltlich verantwortlichen Gruppen der beteiligten Universitäten kamen wir zu einem Konzept, das mehrere physikalische “Ebenen” verbindet. Das Projekt wird sich ab sofort mit Attraktionen und Erlebnissen sowohl auf, als auch unter Wasser – sowohl auf, als auch über der Erde weiterentwickeln.


Die ersten Skizzen führten zu der Metapher des Bienenstocks, mit seiner modularen Struktur, die beliebig anwachsen oder auch schrumpfen kann. Ähnlich wie in der Natur wollen wir das Projekt auf einer riesigen Fläche mit meherere “Initial”-Keimzellen starten und dann gemäss unserer ersten “Grow -as-you-go” Richtlinie behutsam entwickeln.

Erste Schritte – Konzeption


Gemeinsam mit ZINC Projects entwickeln wir derzeit ein Visitor Center für Lynches River Park in Effingham, South Carolina USA. Inmitten beeindruckender Natur mit Sumpfgebieten und umgeben von Plantagen die sehr an den Film “Vom Winde verweht” erinnern, entsteht ein Naturerlebnis der besonderen Art.

Unser Auftrag umfasst die Entwicklung eines Besucherrundganges durch die Gipfel der Bäume sowie ein das Konzept für ein “Environmental Discovery Center” mit Schausammlungen und Exponaten. Des weiteren werden wir uns um das Corporate Design des Parks und ein Kommunikationskonzept kümmern. Das Projekt wird über mehrere Jahre bis Ende 2009 entwickelt und in modularen Teilschritten permanent erweitert.


ZINC Team at Lynches River Park – brainstorming and socializing.