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New $22M Phoenix animal shelter to break ground Wednesday

(Facebook Photo/Heidi's Village)

PHOENIX — At-risk animals in Maricopa County will soon have another place to go when shelters are full.

Heidi’s Village, a $22 million animal shelter planned for Phoenix, will begin construction with a groundbreaking ceremony Wednesday at 9 a.m.

“The purpose of this organization is to help the most at-risk animals in Maricopa County, so the most at-risk in Maricopa County are cats, pitbulls and chihuahuas,” Ellen Clark, executive director, told KTAR News 92.3 FM last week.

However, Clark said, those aren’t the only animals that Heidi’s Village will help.

“Many rescue groups will take animals from Maricopa County Animal Care and Control and try to find homes for them, put them in foster, see to their medical needs,” she said.

“Sometimes there are very adoptable animals at the county facility, but unfortunately there aren’t fosters or there aren’t groups that can take animals, so what Heidi’s Village is going to do is we’re going to provide temporary boarding for animals until some of the rescue groups can find fosters.”

The facility will also house a neonatal center where veterinarians can nurse abandoned kittens until they are eight weeks old and can be adopted.

Clark said the facility plans to expand to include dog and cat adoptions, grooming and veterinary care for rescue groups and the public.

“Because we’re a brand new organization, we plan to slowly integrate all of these programs … start them up slowly, so the first thing we’ll be doing will be the boarding for 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations.”

The facility near the Loop 202 Red Mountain Freeway and 40th Street will consist of nine buildings, totaling 40,000 square feet, and will be able to hold up 250 dogs and 200 cats, according to the Phoenix Business Journal.

According to the Journal, Chasse Building Team sold the land to Virginia Jontes, who wanted to open a shelter and clinic in honor of her rescue dog Heidi, in November 2017 for $3.1 million.

David Fulk, architectural project director at Cawley Architects, told the Journal that the shelter will be built with outdoor play areas, a bone-shaped splash pool and staggered kennels to keep dogs calm.

“We hope to enrich the lives of animals in our community,” Clark said.

KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Ayano Naigaishi contributed to this report.

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