(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) City Council members continued discussing their stance on the new proposed animal shelter location on corporate drive in Mitchell Woods Business District on Wednesday.
Several members, including Donna Jean Boyer, said they were a little apprehensive about the location, believing it was too far away from main roads.
However, after touring the facility Tuesday afternoon, Boyer said she has flipped her decision.
"The building itself is very impressive," Boyer said. "It's almost as though it was built to be an animal shelter. So, that's really influencing my support of the animal shelter."
This location includes over 12,000 square foot of space on the main floor, and an additional 6,000 suare feet on the second floor.
The building used to be owned by Bayer Healthcare, so the facility has large spaces that were once used for labratory work, along with plenty of office and storage space.
"At our current location, we're having to house animals in small areas," Animal Shelter Manager Holly Bowie said. "This building would allow us to house animals in larger areas which could make cleaning more efficient. We would be able to seperate the sick animals from the healthy."
Currently, Friends of the Shelter is paying over $6,000 a month to lease the location, including tax and insurance costs. Bowie said it would cost just under $600,000 to purchase the building.
When the shelter first looked at the location, Bowie said it would cost them about $5 million to purchase the shelter and build a new one from the ground up.
Now the shelter plans on renovating the building to fit their needs, saving them about $2.5 million.
The location also sits on 2.5 acres of land, which Bowie said would create planty of space for outside kennels and exercise areas.
"The space at this location would allow us to have a lot more area for the dogs to play and run, and be exercised," Bowie said.
Friends of the Shelter would like to get support from the council for the project, saying they hope to eventually recieve about $1 million in CIP funds to help purchase the building.
Bowie said a lot of work still has to be done before any final decisions are made, but she's excited they have found a great possible location for the animals.
"We're still kind of in the dream stages of having a new shelter. So, it's early and the Friends have put in so much work, but we're still at the point where we are still just talking about," Bowie said.
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