A detailed rendering of a new Saugerties animal shelter and a schematic of its interior have been commissioned by a committee of local stakeholders. According to Adele Zinderman, daughter of shelter founder Marie Post and administrator of the Saugerties Animal Welfare Fund, these plans are a crucial element to receive needed grant funding for the proposed building.
The structure is planned to be approximately 4,100 square feet with an additional 2,800 square feet for dog kennels and quarantine areas, and will be relocated to have a separate entrance from the town’s transfer station. The schematic includes a two-story cat-climbing space, a lobby, a covered exterior dog run and a “catio.” There will also be a grooming room, a food preparation room, a kitten room adjoined to a free-roaming cat room, a wildlife room, a cat condo area, separate cat and dog quarantine areas, staff and office space and two “community rooms” that can be used for staff meetings or classes, like kitten-fostering demonstrations. It will have two floors, and an elevator.
“This drawing is about the eighth one,” said Zinderman. “It’s not the final drawing, but it’s a pretty close rendering if what we will have … We had a discussion of what we needed.”
Zinderman said that the design was inspired by recently-built shelters that she and Town Supervisor Fred Costello Jr. had visited over the past months.
Architect Laura Cassar, along with a committee including Zinderman, shelter manager Elly Monfett, shelter employee Morgan Bach, Costello, town engineer Rich Praetorius and grant writer Kathleen Kearnan, devised the plans.
The Companion Animal Capital Fund, through which 25 shelters have received funding for repairs and new structures over the past two years, would provide $500,000 toward the project if Saugerties receives a grant. Town officials missed the deadline to apply for the grant funding in 2018, and it was unclear whether the funding would be maintained in the state’s budget until June of this year. Some $400,000 for the project will be sourced from the estate of the late Mary Bradford, an animal lover who was close friends with Marie Post. Zinderman said that the remaining $500,000 will need to be raised, and that approximately $50,000 has been collected so far.
Donations toward the shelter can be brought to town hall at 4 High St.; checks can be made out to the Saugerties Animal Welfare Fund. Interested parties can also patronize the shelter’s annual Christmas Sale on Dec. 5.
“We do need the backing of our community to help us reach the goal to have our shelter. Just a year or two down the road, [inspectors from] the state Department of Agriculture and Markets is going to come in — they would close our shelter down [in its current state]. There’s so much that’s right about it, but so many standards have to be met.”