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Modern animal shelters have evolved to become facilities that do more than efficiently house intake animals. By emphasizing the value of public engagement and providing community spaces (inside and out) for education, training, and community events, these facilities become a more self-sustaining and integrated part of the community. Appropriate plans and equipment will provide the operational efficiencies needed to free up time for staff and volunteers to expand their efforts on direct animal care, on socialization, and on public education—including being able to accommodate more volunteers and visitors beyond the 400 they typically see each month. With greater emphasis on socialization and adoption areas, the high volume of adoptions the SPCA currently handles will be sustainable in the face of growing demand.


The new SPCA facility will be a modern 10,840 ft2 (1007 m2) single story structure. Situated on a 1.5-acre lot, the facility will have adequate outdoor space for the trails, training, and exercise areas envisioned for shelter animals and to host the public.

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Located near the existing SPCA shelter on the east side of St. John’s Airport, this once isolated area is seeing rapid re-development and will soon be connected to the Hebron Way extension and bus routes, maximizing the ability for volunteers, staff, and adopters to access the facility.


Adoption Lobby
A spacious 900 ft2 (84 m2) adoption lobby offers a welcoming and open space for visitors to bond with animals – central to the SPCA vision —leading to more adoptions. In the off hours, the lobby will serve as a community room for public activities and engagement.

New Veterinary Clinic
An in-house veterinarian and clinic with surgery, X-ray, and laboratory testing capabilities reduces treatment bottlenecks and costs in both testing and spay and neuter programs, allowing the SPCA St. John’s to do more for animals and lower-income pet owners.

Separated Cat and Dog Adoption Rooms
Separated cat and dog adoption areas reduce animal stress and emulate a home environment - offering the prospective owner and pet a more realistic sense of what living together will be like.

Volunteer and Training Room
A spacious 56 m2 (600 ft2) volunteer work and training room allows more volunteers and team-building activities involving animal care and socialization to take place. This space doubles as a much-needed boardroom.

Safe Intake and Isolation Areas
These areas are essential for reducing risks to the existing animal population and winning an animal’s trust, it is important to be able to properly isolate and transition them.

Proper Ventilation
A modern, properly zoned ventilation and heating system will reduce costs. More importantly, allowing for separate intake areas to isolate sick animals and minimize the risk of airborne disease outbreaks.

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