Sacramento Zoo, Elk Grove agree to memorandum of understanding for possible relocation


At last night's Elk Grove City Council meeting, the City of Elk Grove and the Sacramento Zoological Society (SZS) agreed to a memorandum of understanding (MOU) regarding the possible relocation of the Sacramento Zoo. The city council unanimously approved the MOU.

According to the staff report, the SZC will initiate fundraising activities to construct a possible zoo. If the zoo is ultimately approved, it will be located on a 60-acre parcel in the Southeast Policy Area the city specifically purchased for the potential relocation.  

Presenting the report was Christopher "CJ" Jordan, the city's innovations czar, who outlined the responsibility of each party. The city will handle public engagement, infrastructure planning, environmental reviews, and project approvals, while the SZS will have authority over master planning, cost estimates, schematic plans, and developing a financial plan.

Jordan said the master plan "lays out what we will be doing over the next 18 to 24 months," and it "will create a formal financing plan" for the proposed facility. He also noted the city would develop an extensive public outreach plan.

Speaking on behalf of the SZS, Jason Jacobs said they are proceeding with the pursuit of animals as though the zoo deal will be consummated.  

"We are operating the zoo on the assumption that we will be opening a new zoo," Jacobs said. "Because it takes years to get the animals where we need them."

During their deliberations, City Councilmember Kevin Spease noted the MOU does not mean the project has been approved and that it is often reported the zoo deal is finished.

"I think it is important for people to know that this is thoughtful, collaborative process that we are going through to make sure that this works out in the interest of Elk Grove and of course, the animals," he said. "It is a positive direction, I'm happy to be moving in this direction, but this is a memorandum of understanding to continue the conversation."
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Capt. Benjamin Willard said...

For better or worse, the relocation of the Sacramento Zoo will happen. As mentioned by Mr. Jordan during the meeting, it will take 18 to 24 months for the process to be completed. The city will put on a great show and get citizens pumped up like kids on a Halloween candy bender.

D.J. Blutarsky said...

And oh by the way, we need you to vote for a sales tax increase, but we won't be talking about it until the June primaries are over.

Renegade said...

This may be a deal that bankrupts the City if it goes forward regardless of the coming tax increases that are inevitable to pay for this project.

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