One of the complaints/concerns of local animal-rescue folks is that the Orange County Shelter, where lost pets and strays are taken, is so far away. The county is working on building a new shelter in Tustin, Fifth District Supervisor Pat Bates says.
New OC Animal Care Center Update
The Board of Supervisors continues to make progress on the development of a new Animal Shelter. On January 24, the Board approved an Exchange Agreement with the South Orange County Community College District (SOCCCD) for a land-swap of ten-acre parcels at the former MCAS Tustin Base. Five acres of the parcel to be received by the County, following release by the Department of Navy, has been designated as the site for a new Animal Care Center, which will replace the existing Animal Shelter currently in the City of Orange.
The planned Tustin site is centrally located in the County and easily accessible to all. OC Parks has been tasked with developing an 84-acre park directly across from the site, which will include one of the landmark blimp hangars. Conceptual plans have already been completed for the new Animal Care Center.
The County is continuing to work with the City of Tustin and SOCCCD to revise the documentation required by the Department of Navy as part of the Re-Use Process. It is hoped that a decision from the Department of Navy regarding conveyance can be obtained in late 2012 or early 2013.
Once the Department of Navy issues the decision on conveyance, construction plans will be developed and ground will be broken on the new site. Timing on construction will depend upon the actions of the Department of Navy and any requirements set forth in that action.
Previous cost estimates for the new Animal Care Center ranged from approximately $25 million to $30 million. Initial funding already has been set aside by the Board. Additionally, preliminary discussions have been initiated with an advisory group of city managers from the cities that contract with OC Animal Care regarding the balance required to complete the project, with more formal discussions on a funding agreement being initiated in the fall. Staff is also looking at other ideas for fundraising, including a non-profit fundraising effort.
Development of a new Animal Care Center is a high priority for the County and our partner contract cities. To that end, I will continue to provide updates on the progress as we move forward.