On Tuesday morning, the Orange County Commission received a briefing on possible new options to replace or augment the existing pet shelter, which is now over 30 years old and in need of improvements for their furry tenants.
Most of the briefing presented by county officials was positive with the number of impounded dogs and cats down and adoptions and sterilizations up. Over 110,000 residents visit the shelter each year to visit the facility that currently consists of 216 cat cages or “condos” and 80 dog kennels.
County staff looked at other shelters in Miami-Dade and Broward counties before determining that building a new facility on the current location which is adjacent to the Millenia Mall and other high traffic options was the best option to take.
While the new shelters have been proven to raise employee morale and eliminate the “jail” type setting many other shelters currently have in place, the cost was projected to be between $35 to $25 million dollars for a 70,000 to 50,000 square foot facility.
Feedback from Commissioners was positive but cost was at the front of the discussion with budget allocations possibly pushed back to 2018 or beyond.
“It’s going to be costly and more expensive than we anticipated but it’s the right way to go.” said Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs.