Humane Society Moves Forward With West Oahu Shelter

After a recent five-acre gift of land from D.R. Horton-Schuler Homes, West Oahu residents can look forward to their own Hawaiian Humane Society campus in the area.

“My gosh, what a gift,” said Hawaiian Humane Society president and CEO Pamela Burns.

Since 1999, the organization has sought to establish a second location in West Oahu. To now receive the plot of land as a gift, said Burns, is thrilling.

“It was kind of overwhelming because it’s something that we’ve worked up toward for so many years,” she added.

The plot of land is located on Fort Weaver Road in Ewa, part of the Ho‘opili community. It still is in its earliest stages of planning and development. Because it will be built on an undeveloped piece of land, much of the infrastructure needs to be determined before construction can begin. Burns is hopeful that, provided all goes well, it will open in roughly two years.

Last year, its Mo‘ili‘ili shelter brought in 26,500 animals. A study completed by HHF Planners discovered that a West Oahu shelter would have more conveniently served half of the animals brought to its town location. And when you consider that 74 percent of households in West Oahu have pets, it’s somewhat of a no-brainer.

“We’re really going to push this as hard as we can, and have been because it is so needed in West Oahu,” said Burns, “and we’re so excited.”

When it is complete, this second shelter also will be home to a community dog park. As an organization that works closely with youths, it will feature an educational component in the form of a designated gathering place where sessions can be conducted.

“I’ve said it before, but for D.R. Horton-Schuler Homes to incorporate an animal-care campus as part of that development … is really visionary,” said Burns.

“I don’t know of any development across the country that is incorporating an animal-care campus into a planned development.”