Alaqua Animal Refuge

Location :: Freeport, FL       Year Completed :: 2014-2016

Schnell Urban Design provided pro bono design services for the new home of the Alaqua Animal Refuge in Freeport, Florida. Alaqua is a beloved non-profit devoted to rescuing, rehabilitating, and finding homes for a wide variety and large number of animals.

The challenge for Schnell Urban Design was to create a master plan that captures the vision of Alaqua founder Laurie Hood. She envisions a facility that enables her organization to facilitate animal adoptions, animal medical care, education, and fundraising. The new Alaqua will be a bold new model for animal refuges around the country and the world.

The new Alaqua is imagined as a campus or rural hamlet centered on a square. The entrance to the facility is marked by a working barn along the highway, followed by an existing (and enhanced) allee of trees, and a focal point within a roundabout. Buildings of various uses – ranging from a multi-use education building to a medical building, are located around a “town square.” The largest and most prominent building is the adoption building, also located on the square. The muti-use education building, which is also used as a chapel, sits on the edge of hill and offers views down to a pond and wetland.

Schnell Urban Design also provided a conceptual design for a horse arena located on the new property.

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