Mayor Joe Hogsett & IACS Break Ground on New Animal Shelter

On Monday, Mayor Joe Hogsett and Indianapolis Animal Care Services (IACS) broke ground on the new IACS Shelter. The new shelter, located at 5001. E. Raymond St., is critical to improving and sustaining animal welfare services in Marion County.

“I am thrilled to be with you all to celebrate this big step we take toward improving animal welfare in our community,” said Mayor Joe Hogsett. “It required much collaborative, creative problem solving alongside our community to make this new space a reality.”

Current plans put the shelter at more than double the size of the existing 24,000-square-foot shelter on Harding Street. It is expected to be completed within the first half of 2026. The design includes improved medical clinic and lab space, a modern lobby and reception area, space to assess and monitor animals and multiple restrooms and shower rooms. The new shelter is purposefully placed in the 46203 ZIP code, which historically has had some of the highest stray pick-ups and animal control-related runs in Marion County.

“Our current shelter does not meet the needs of the animals we serve or the dedicated staff who work tirelessly to provide care,” said Abbey Brands, Director of the Department of Business and Neighborhood Services, which oversees IACS. “This new building isn’t just larger. Its design will allow for more efficient operations, a better approach to medical care and more humane treatment of the animals in our care.”

The project is being built using the Construction Manager as Constructor (CMc) build model. F.A. Wilhelm Construction was awarded the CMc contract in May and will partner with the design team to finalize the design. The shelter is largely funded by Friends of Indy Animals, which is committing $7 million from their ‘Journey Home’ capital campaign, and a $20 million bond approved by the City-County Council. Key gifts to the capital campaign include a $3 million grant from the Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust, a $1 million investment from the Lilly Endowment and a $1 million gift from the Indianapolis Colts. Additional project partners include J.S. Held, krM Architects, Dominion Seven, KBSO Consulting, HEAPY, JQOL and Tikur Solutions.

During the event, Mayor Hogsett spoke to the initiatives IACS has undertaken to improve operations and inform long-term organizational planning. In late 2023, IACS began a partnership with national organization Best Friends through their embed program. During this engagement, Best Friends is working on-site to assess operations and provide recommendations to shelter leadership. IACS is also collaborating with local and regional animal welfare partners to develop a community-wide animal welfare strategic plan. Finally, earlier this year, IACS kicked-off an organizational assessment to better understand long-term needs for growth and improvement.

Media Contact:
Dawn Olsen
Chief Communications Officer
Department of Business and Neighborhood Services
712-242-5638 (mobile)