The Monterey Bay Aquarium is developing a $7 million veterinary clinic that will extend across the city boundaries of both Monterey and neighbouring Pacific Grove.
This will broaden the range of veterinary services the aquarium provides to both its own animals and the ones it rescues.
The two cities have each approved the work. The new on-site animal hospital will be sited over part of the main aquarium building and will overlook its corporation yard.
Hank Armstrong is the aquarium’s vice president of communications. He said, “It’s basically two hospital wards. They will allow us to combine a lot of veterinary services that have not been centralized. It will allow us to consolidate. Also it will bring our current services up to best practices. This will mean that the aquarium will have a world-class facility that provides world-class care.
“We’re basically taking a piece of the first and second floors and extending it out a bit to create new square footage.”
The project is still in the fundraising stage.
Ken Peterson is Aquarium Communications Director. He said, “We’re still soliciting money to pay for this new veterinary clinic as well as the education center.”
Construction should start for the new 6, 300-square-foot facility in March. It will take around six months.
Currently the aquarium treats between two and five animals per day. Armstrong said, “A lot has changed since 1984 in medical care and veterinary care. Whether it’s the thousands of animals in our collection or for wildlife that comes in stranded like sea otters, birds or sea turtles, this will allow us to provide the best possible care we can. It will provide facilities like radiology and pathology and all services that come with animal care.”
Peterson said, “It’s about, ‘How can we do more for the animals in our care as well as for the animals in the wild?’ ”
A Six-Year, $160 Million Campaign
Development of the aquarium’s new Center For Ocean Education and Leadership is also ongoing.
Designed by San Francisco-based architecture firm Mark Cavagnero Associates, this 26, 000-square-foot facility will enhance the aquarium’s ability to conduct educational programs. It will be ready by 2019.
This project is part of a six-year, $160 million campaign to support a number of the aquarium’s initiatives.
Petersen said, “We want to get these projects rolling. We will do it before we get all the money raised and in hand. We’re fortunate to have passionate and supportive donors. We feel confident that we can make a good case for raising funds.”