Construction starts on new Benton Franklin Human Society shelter - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Construction starts on new Benton Franklin Humane Society shelter

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KENNEWICK, Wash.-- Construction started Tuesday on the Benton-Franklin Humane Society's new shelter. Bulldozers and other equipment started clearing 4 acres of land at 1736 East 7th Avenue in Kennewick.

The Humane Society started raising money in 2008 and says they're excited to see ground finally broken.  The new, no-kill shelter will be able to house three times as many animals as the current shelter.  Ed Dawson, Operations Manager for the Benton-Franklin Humane Society, says the current facility off Gage Blvd. is open only limited hours because the building was originally designed as a veterinarian's office and they're not able to clean the kennels and have guests in the building at the same time.  He explains the new building is "going to allow us to be open and clean kennels at the same time.  So we're going to be able to be open for longer hours to serve the public better, which is great, and hopefully will lead to more adoptions."

Dawson says the Humane Society has already raised about $1.5million for the project, which will pay for all the building costs. However, they still need to raised about $300,000 for kennels and cages. To donate, you can go directly to the Humane Society's current building or mail a check.  Be sure to specify that the money should go to the New Shelter Fund. To learn more, click here.