OXFORD – City leaders have moved toward the creation of a long-sought, long-fought-for new animal shelter.
Aldermen voted 7-0 Tuesday to advertise for design proposals for the approximately 4,000-square-foot facility, which will be built on McElroy Drive.
The city, Lafayette County and the Oxford-Lafayette Humane Society will all share in the cost.
The current shelter is several miles out of town, is much smaller and uses a trailer for office space. Humane Society President Cyd Dunlap said being in town will provide distinct advantages.
“Hopefully, we won’t have as many overnight drop-offs from other counties. We think we’ll get also more volunteers – especially more retired people who don’t like to travel out to the shelter on a heavily traveled two-lane road. People will also be able to come out and volunteer on their lunch hour.”
Louis Brandt, who donated $100,000 toward the design and construction, added, “It’ll be more convenient for people to come adopt animals, too.”
After future neighbors of the new shelter questioned how much noise the animals would add to the neighborhood, acoustics consultants from the University of Mississippi added design elements that would minimize any outside noise.
“It’ll be interesting for people to come and observe after we get it built,” Brandt said. “I think it’ll be a showplace.”
With bid letting and the beginning of construction expected in February, the facility could be ready for occupancy as early as June.
Mayor Pat Patterson said, “I might say summer, just to be safe.”
Errol Castens/NEMS Daily Journal