By ROXANN MILLER
6:36 PM EST, January 19, 2013
It’s been years in the making, but the staff of the Cumberland Valley Animal Shelter finally will say goodbye to its outdated, cramped facility and move into a new, state-of-the art shelter beginning Wednesday.
The shelter, currently at 2325 Country Road in Chambersburg, will be closed between Wednesday, Jan. 23, and Wednesday, Jan. 30, to move to its new facility.
The shelter will reopen Thursday, Jan. 31, at 11 a.m. at its new location at 5051 Letterkenny Road West in Chambersburg.
“We’re looking forward to finally moving into our new, spacious location,” said Bill Gour, director of development for the shelter. “The current facility is old and antiquated. It’s served its purpose, but it’s past its prime.”
During the week that the shelter is closed, no adoptions will take place, according to the shelter’s website.
Stray animals can be taken to the Antietam Humane Society at 8513 Lyons Road in Waynesboro, Pa.
The new building, which is on an 11.2-acre plot, will provide room for about 130 cats and 70 dogs — almost twice as many as the current shelter accommodates, Gour said.
The current shelter is beyond capacity, and it’s time to move, he said.
While the move is necessary, Gour said the new facility is not completely finished.
Shelter officials began a $4.2 million Rallying to Relocate Capital Campaign, with construction to be held in three phases.
Gour said at the end of phase two, the project was hampered by the economic downturn and some false starts and then regained momentum at the end of 2011.
In the summer, shelter officials met with contractors to rephase the project, Gour said.
“We had to decide what we could put off until later, and what we absolutely needed to get into that building,” Gour said.
To get into the building, Gour said money was pulled from fundraising, pledges and donations. In addition, shelter officials tapped into their endowment as well as their line of credit, borrowing money for the first time.
Not only were shelter staff running out of room in the outdated shelter, but financially, it became a delicate balancing act running a shelter and raising funds for the capital campaign.
“The big question became why are we in an old building that is antiquated, overcrowded, when we have a new building?” Gour said. “So we decided that we are so close, the best thing would be to get into it and finish it once we’re in.”
The areas that are not complete are the kennels in the dog adoption area, an underground tank to collect rain water for kennel washdowns, and critter cubbies.
He estimated it could cost a little less than $1 million to complete the new shelter and pay back the line of credit.
“Once we move in, we have to finish those parts that aren’t finished yet, and then we want to pay back our line of credit,” Gour said. “So fundraising will be ongoing.”
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