Work has begun on building a specialist animal terminal called the “Ark at JFK airport”. The arrangements and living quarters for animals using the terminal will be so lavish that passengers have complained that they would be better off if they were cattle and able to use the animal terminal rather than being herded into pens in the airport’s security area.
For example, there will be a 20,000 square-foot resort for dogs which includes a bone-shaped swimming pool, massage, spa and grooming services. Cats awaiting a connecting flight will have trees that they can climb and which overlook an aquarium. Horses will be provided with a barn of 70 stalls, cushioned floors and a walking track.
A sloping floor will be provided at the cattle-holding facility that allows the manure to slide away into a receptacle. The whole project has been thoroughly well thought through and some argue too much time has been spent in designing it.
The “Ark at JFK” is scheduled to open next year and the Port Authority of New York expects 70,000 feathered, scaly or furry travellers to pass through the facility which will be privately-run.
This has to be a good idea. Is this an indication that the attitude of the authorities towards animals is improving? Is this a symptom of an improved relationship between humankind and animals? I don’t know, but it is good to see animals treated as good as humans.
I just hope that the designers have consulted a good cat behaviourist to ensure that the luxury facilities are also practical and meet the emotional needs of cats. The trees provide vertical spaces but that is only part of the requirements.
The terminal will cost $48 million. It will cover 178,000 square feet. A veterinarian will be on hand.
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