Zoo Atlanta breaks ground for new veterinary complex


Drone footage from the groundbreaking ceremony (Image courtesy of Zoo Atlanta)

Zoo Atlanta announced construction has officially begun on its new veterinary complex. The complex will be named The Rollins Animal Health Center in honor of the support The Gary W. Rollins Foundation has provided to the zoo, including a $3 million investment into the new complex.1 This new health center will replace the zoo’s existing veterinary facilities and provide the zoo with state-of-the-art technology, research, and academic partnerships.

“The Zoo Atlanta Veterinary Team daily provides care for animals representing more than 200 species, from elephants to frogs, and this care is never compromised,” said Raymond B. King, president and chief executive office of Zoo Atlanta, in an organizational release.1

“The Rollins Animal Health Center will replace outdated facilities and enable the Zoo to fully inhabit its growing reputation for excellence in veterinary care. We are deeply grateful to the members of our philanthropic community, who have shown us by their gifts that they have a strong investment in Zoo Atlanta’s indelible place in Atlanta and beyond,” he continued.

According to the release,1 the zoo raised nearly $21 million with an overall goal of raising $22 million through support from the philanthropic community, including gifts from the Lettie Pate Evans Foundation, The Sara Giles Foundation, and The Zeist Foundation. 

The Rollins Animal Health Center will have dedicated laboratory, pharmacy, radiology, and surgical spaces. The center will also have a CT scanner, animal holding dens both inside and out, office spaces, conference room, quarantine dens, and more. The facility will also have a team dedicated to care that will have access to dedicated food preparation areas.

Two dorm rooms, restrooms, and a laboratory work space will also be added to the center for team members that may need to stay overnight for supervision or even to accommodate visiting colleagues or students. The zoo also hopes to be able to increase the virtual learning opportunities through the features that will be available in the new facility.1

Besides physical attributes, the health center also is expanding research capabilities, professional externship and internship opportunities, and collaborating with academic partners such as Georgia Institute of Technology; Georgia State University; Kennesaw State University, Gwinett Technical School, and more.

Zoo Atlanta officially broke ground on July 27, 2023 with construction expected to be finished by the summer of 2024.


Zoo Atlanta begins construction on veterinary complex. News release. Zoo Atlanta. July 28, 2023. Accessed August 1, 2023. https://zooatlanta.org/zoo-atlanta-begins-construction-on-22-million-veterinary-complex