MAPS 4 Animal Shelter Designs Unveiled

News 9 went to visit the current shelter in Oklahoma City, where the staff shared why a new shelter couldn’t come soon enough.

Wednesday, January 3rd 2024, 4:01 pm

By: News 9, Deanne Stein

Plans for a new animal shelter in Oklahoma City were unveiled this week during a MAPS 4 Neighborhood Subcommittee. Now, the new $42 million shelter is one step away from going before the city council.

Community members claim that the current conditions of the shelter are evident the moment you walk through the door. “It is sad,” said Edmond resident Michelle Shoffstall. “There's so many of them, it breaks your heart going in there.”

The city said that the building is run down and overcrowded. Jake Williams and Avenlee Strand were turned away when trying to drop off two stray huskies they rescued due to overcrowding. However, they say they weren’t impressed with the conditions. “It was kind of stinky,” Williams said. “It's just not somewhere I would want to put these nice dogs because they deserve a nice place to stay and it's not.” 

The numbers change every day but currently, there are over 400 dogs in the shelter and that’s over capacity by 37 percent, but with the new shelter, there will be more space to save more animals. “They needed larger everything,” said Todd Edmonds, the principal architect on the project. “They just flat out have outgrown the facility, it's evident when you walk into the facility, that they're just busting at the seams.”

The staff showed us the facility where you could see the kennels were small and sometimes held two dogs at a time. In the new plans, Edmonds says he has increased the total square footage of the dog kennel space by over 200 percent and the cat kennel space by 100 percent.

While there will be more kennels, there will be less per room, to cut down on noise and provide more natural light. There also will be a park setting outside with more outdoor play areas. “Every kennel has an outdoor play area and then we also have an outdoor play area at the front of the building,” Edmonds said.

The surgical suite will be expanded with a designated x-ray area. The plan also calls for a new barn to house farm animals. With an 85 percent adoption rate, the staff hopes to increase that to 90 percent with the goal of becoming a no-kill shelter. “I just feel like it's going to be easy to reach that goal and exceed it whenever they're in a new facility that is clean, smells good, is more inviting and comfortable for the public,” Edmonds said.

The designs go before the MAPS Citizen’s Advisory Committee for approval on Thursday and if approved, on to the City Council. Once everything is approved, the city hopes to break ground this fall.


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