Builder Finishes First Phase Of National Elephant Sanctuary

By  //  February 21, 2013

First Inhabitants Expected This Spring

BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – The National Elephant Center’s board of directors  liked the work that a Melbourne construction company performed at the Brevard Zoo so much, they asked them to develop a new project just south of the Brevard County line.

M.H. Williams Construction of Melbourne has finished construction of the first phase of a a new 225-acre elephant sanctuary in Fellsmere. The first elephants are expected there later this spring. (Shutterstock image)

M.H. Williams Construction of Melbourne was selected to build a new 225-acre elephant sanctuary in Fellsmere on the basis of their prior project, which was the construction of a 10,000-square-foot veterinary facility at the Brevard Zoo.

The Harris Corporation Animal Care Center opened last February at the zoo to great acclaim.

It includes state-of-the-art equipment, X-ray, treatment and intensive care rooms, a research lab and pharmacy, scrub facilities, veterinary offices, and a large animal commissary and food preparation area.

The first phase of the new project in Fellsmere has been completed, with the first elephants arriving later this spring. It  spans up to 30 acres of a former orange grove for a national sanctuary for elephants.

M.H. Williams Construction wrapped up the $2.5 million first phase of the sanctuary, which is a joint project of more than 73 zoos across America, including the Brevard Zoo.

Initial efforts involved building an elephant barn, a station for elephant keepers and four elephant paddocks, along with converting the land into a pasture to support 10 elephants.

The site is situated south of the C54 Canal south of Palm Bay on the Fellsmere Grade.

The total cost of the project when all phases are completed is expected to be about $15 million.