MARSHALL, Texas (KTAL/KMSS) – Plans are moving forward for a new animal shelter in east Texas.
Marshall is home to one of the oldest and smallest animal shelters in the country, but if everything goes according to plan, by next spring the city will have one of the newest animal adoption centers in the nation.
Thursday, city commissioners approved a resolution setting the project in motion by authorizing bid requests from contractors.
The new facility will be about 6,000 square feet with room to grow, and will be built near the middle school.
“We hope to adorn the front in some manner, so it has a pleasant appearance from the street,” said Mark Rohr, city manager. “It’ll have a digital sign and we’re excited about that. We think the adoption rate will increase if we have nice pictures of the available animals pictured on the sign, especially since we’re gonna be located out by the middle school, parents are gonna be driving their kids to school.”
The project is projected to cost about $1.6 million with funds provided by the city, county and donations.
“The first one built 50 years ago was a public/private project too,” said Jerry Cargill, Friends of Marshall Animal Shelter. “And so, the city and the community’s come together to make this a very unique public/private offering, and I think it’s gonna be something that the community and the county and the state can be proud of.”
Supporters of the project said they’re looking forward to having a more modern facility that will be able to house more animals.
Right now, the existing Marshall shelter has one of the highest kill rates in the country.
“Which is an absolute travesty in this day and age that, you know, low kill is such a movement that this is still happening in our city,” said Phoenix Albright. “This city that is supposed to be the American city.”
City leaders plan to start requesting bids for the project March 1 with a goal of opening the new Marshall Animal Adoption Center in April 2021.