The SPCA of Texas is planning a $15-million expansion to its Oak Cliff headquarters, which will include an adoption center and vet clinic. A $4-million challenge grant from the Rees-Jones Foundation, announced last week, is accelerating the project. When the SPCA moved its headquarters to Oak Cliff a few years ago, the adoption center stayed in the old building — the 35-year-old Dealey Animal Care Center — on what is now Riverfront Blvd. The Texas Department of Transportation will demolish that building as part of a plan to widen Interstate 35.

The Rees-Jones Foundation grant is a 2-to-1-challenge grant, which means they will donate up to $4 million as long as the community donates $2 million by Sept. 30. The SPCA hopes to raise an additional $2 million from the community by that date as well. Along with $7 million they’ve already raised, including a previous gift of $1 million from the Rees-Jones Foundation, they hope to start the $15 million project by the end of the year.
The new adoption facility will include rooms set up like typical living rooms, where people and animals can meet and get to know each other in a relaxed environment.

“Research tells us that a lot of times, people don’t find the pet that’s right for them on the first visit,” says Julie Siegel, vice president of development for the SPCA of Texas. “So they might have to come back two or three times, and we want to make it a cheerful experience.”

Along with the gifts of $10,000 to $1 million the SPCA is seeking, they also expect to have “some fun opportunities for the public to get involved,” toward the end of summer.