03/19/07 — Animal shelter update

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Animal shelter update

By Andrew Bell
Published in News on March 19, 2007 2:06 PM

Engineers' borings at the proposed animal shelter location off Clingman Street in Goldsboro came back "perfect," county officials said.

Now Wayne County's commissioners are hoping Golds-boro City Council will agree when members consider the issue tonight.

But the commissioners understand the decision on where to locate the new shelter is not a done deal. The last time Wayne officials asked council to rezone county-owned land in the city for an animal shelter, members voted against the measure.

This time, County Mana-ger Lee Smith said several council members have seen the animal shelter's proposed 11,500-square-foot, $1.5 million facility and visited the site, which is near the city garage off Clingman Street.

The county owns about 30 acres in that area, but only plans to use about 4.5 acres for a new shelter. Fortunately for county officials, the only building in sight of the proposed location is the city garage.

Last September, city officials considered the county's rezoning request for property it owned on the north side of Eighth Street between Humphrey Street and Wayne Memorial Drive.

But several property owners spoke against the request saying that an animal shelter so close to other Wayne Memorial Drive businesses would be a "detriment to future development." Others complained that an animal shelter's noises and smells would keep potential customers from patronizing nearby businesses.

After last fall's decision by the city council to reject the request, county officials searched the county for another suitable site, but county officials were limited on where they could look.

Last fall, two anonymous donors said they would provide $200,000 for a new animal shelter if certain criteria were met. One requirement is that the county build a shelter in a central location.

County officials had considered building a new shelter on county-owned land near the Goldsboro-Wayne Muni-cipal Airport north of Golds-boro, but engineers' reports last month concluded that the soil at the site could not support the facility.

Smith said he and other county officials quickly found another suitable site in the land off Clingman Street. County officials hope to replace the existing 50-year-old animal shelter, which is a 1,150-square-foot facility on Brick Street, during the next year.