City of Whittlesea
Responding to the needs of a growing population, Architecture Matters assisted the City of Whittlesea in a major redevelopment of their existing animal welfare facility of some 2000m2. We upgraded and expanded their existing Epping facility, significantly increasing their animal accommodation capacity whilst also improving the amenity for both animals and staff. Following a partnership with the neighbouring municipalities of Darebin and Merri-bek, the now regional facility is compliant with the Victorian Code of Practice for the Management of Dogs and Cats in Shelters and Pounds. This project was achieved on budget and program, utilising a design and construct model in collaboration with McCorkell Constructions.
The complex required a detailed analysis of stakeholder needs, for both the two and four-legged varieties. The resultant floor plan prioritised the safe housing and movement of animals into and out of the building as well as the provision of a high-quality working environment that recognises the unique challenges and stresses experienced by animal welfare staff.
The new facility houses up to 110 dogs and 120 cats, as well as other small animals, in custom-designed, air conditioned accommodation areas and exercise yards. Stray livestock are accommodated in external yards.
On-site vet rooms and housing for dangerous dogs are also integrated throughout the facility. We adopted a flexible, modular-ready design approach that is easily adaptable for potential future expansion. In fact the scope of works was extended just prior to the commencement of construction.
The building seeks to present the animals housed within a secure but friendly environment to better facilitate their identification and return or potential rehoming. Sophisticated ‘cat condominiums’ and fully sealed dog pens provide healthy and humane accommodation.
Council vehicles used for animal collection are securely managed via a large covered yard, including vehicle wash out and staff amenities. The resulting facility is self-reliant and comprehensive, the successful realisation of a complex specialised project brief and program by Architecture Matters.