10/05/2012 02:26 EDT | Updated 12/05/2012 05:12 EST

Toronto Council Puts Brakes On Zoo Sale

The Toronto Zoo is not for sale.

Just a few days after the City of Toronto took a step toward selling or leasing Canada's largest zoo, council voted overwhelmingly to bring the process to a halt.

The city issued a request for expressions of interest on Monday, with Mayor Rob Ford saying he'd "love" to see the zoo sold at a profit for taxpayers.

However, a motion by Coun. Paul Ainslie on Thursday to cancel the request was supported by council 30-2, with only Ford and Deputy Mayor Doug Holyday voting against.

The facility has more than 5,000 animals spread over almost 300 hectares of land.

Coun. Gloria Lindsay Luby, a member of the zoo board of management, has said she would like to see a zoological society take over the Toronto Zoo.

Selling off the city's zoos was part of independent auditor KPMG 's suggestions in a comprehensive document released in 2011 meant to find savings in the city's budget.

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