Despite concerns from a few neighboring businesses over noise and odors, an animal shelter and adoption facility has received unanimous approval to open in Palatine.
Barb's Precious Rescue and Adoption Center will house up to 50 cats and six dogs in an old farm house at 313 N. Quentin Road.
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"I think I can offer the village of Palatine a solution for animal control in a very professional manner," said owner Barbara Weber. "And I do not want to be a nuisance to my neighbors. I want to make every effort to make sure the noise is (kept at) a minimum."
In a 25-page operations plan, which Village Manager Reid Ottesen called the most comprehensive he's seen in "a number of years," Weber goes into great detail about every aspect of the facility and the controls that will be in place to limit noise and odors.
For example, only two dogs will be allowed outside at a time, and they will be supervised. Weber also plans to build a 6-foot-tall privacy fence on the property.
Although no one objected in person at Monday's council meeting, six people did notify the village of their opposition to the project. Most were from adjacent office tenants concerned about barking and smells during business hours. A couple across the street urged the village to keep the property a traditional office setting.
Ben Vyverberg, director of planning and zoning, said the village staff supported the facility from a land use perspective because there isn't a consistency to the type of businesses that currently exist in the area. The animal shelter will be among light manufacturing, a church, offices and Golf Nation.
Weber, a longtime Palatine resident who works as a health care executive and has rescued cats for about 25 years, said she has seen an increase in the number of both feral cats and domestic pets who are let outside and have kittens. Three years ago, she became a certified feral cat caretaker for Cook County.
Weber wants to focus on socializing the animals so they can be adopted. There will be limited hours of public operation, with adoptions allowed in the evenings, on weekends and by appointment. The shelter will be staffed primarily by volunteers.
She hopes to open the facility by the end of the year or the first quarter of 2014.
Like other animal shelters, the facility will need to get a license from the Illinois Department of Agriculture. The project is also subject to a six-month review by the village, which could implement further conditions to its approval if they're needed.