New as­sisted liv­ing fa­cil­ity adds to re­gional in­ven­tory

The News-Times - - BUSINESS - By Jor­dan Grice Jor­[email protected]­medi­

De­vel­op­ers have their sights on a spring de­but for a 165,000-square­foot se­nior and as­sisted liv­ing com­mu­nity that is tak­ing form in Shel­ton.

For the past year, Mary­land­based Brightview Se­nior Liv­ing Fa­cil­ity has been build­ing its sec­ond Con­necti­cut fa­cil­ity on Beard Sawmill Road, which will add 161 units of se­nior hous­ing to the city by mid-June.

The four-story com­plex, which is vis­i­ble from Route 8, is join­ing Brightview’s Norwalk com­mu­nity and sev­eral other de­vel­op­ments meet­ing the ris­ing de­mand for hous­ing for the area’s ag­ing pop­u­la­tion.

“Ev­ery­body is pro­ject­ing that the se­nior pop­u­la­tion is grow­ing ex­po­nen­tially, there is a lot of build­ing in the ex­act area,” said Terry Jack­son, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the Brightview Shel­ton. “Our tar­get mar­kets and our de­mo­graph­ics of de­pos­i­tors and in­ter­est is def­i­nitely ge­o­graph­i­cally be­com­ing a smaller cir­cle, but there are more and more peo­ple.”

Ac­cord­ing to the U.S. Cen­sus Bureau, more than 575,000 Con­necti­cut res­i­dents were age 65 and older in 2016, mak­ing up roughly 16 per­cent of the pop­u­la­tion. That’s a three per­cent­age point in­crease from 2000, when about 13 per­cent of peo­ple in the state were 65 and older.

Brightview op­er­ates 36 fa­cil­i­ties in the North­east from Vir­ginia to Mas­sachusetts. The pri­vately owned com­pany opened its first Con­necti­cut fa­cil­ity in Norwalk in 2016.

The ad­di­tion of Brightview’s new Shel­ton fa­cil­ity aligns with a grow­ing num­ber of se­nior and as­sisted liv­ing com­pa­nies mak­ing their way to Fair­field County.

Con­necti­cut-based Maple­wood Se­nior Liv­ing is also ex­pected to de­but its new 93,000-square-foot fa­cil­ity in Fair­field in the spring, mak­ing seven lo­ca­tions statewide. The com­pany has lo­ca­tions in Bethel, Darien, East Norwalk, New­town and Orange while also ex­pand­ing into Mas­sachusetts, New York and Ohio.

Like Brightview, the state also at­tracted de­vel­op­ers from be­yond state lines like Benchmark Se­nior Liv­ing of Mas­sachusetts, which just added 88 units of hous­ing in Fair­field this fall.

Leas­ing of Brightview Shel­ton’s units has been on­go­ing since June and the new fa­cil­ity has al­ready re­ceived more than 290 ap­pli­ca­tions, Jack­son said.

Roughly 90 per­cent of the ap­pli­ca­tions, ac­cord­ing to Jack­son, have been from se­niors look­ing for in­de­pen­dent hous­ing.

“That mar­ket seg­ment has clearly raised their hand,” Jack­son said. “That in­de­pen­dent liv­ing mar­ket­place is def­i­nitely feel­ing like they’ve been ig­nored.”

The fa­cil­ity will have 87 in­de­pen­dent liv­ing units, 48 as­sisted liv­ing units and 26 mem­ory care apart­ments for peo­ple with de­men­tia such as Alzheimer’s dis­ease.

The build­ing will be three to four sto­ries, have both one- and twobed­room units, out­door court­yards, 125 park­ing spa­ces and one drive­way on Beard Sawmill Road. The build­ing’s farm­house-type ar­chi­tec­tural de­sign is in­tended to re­flect the lo­ca­tion, for­merly part of the neigh­bor­ing farm.

The com­mu­nity also fea­tures a din­ing room, pub and café, as well as other leisure and recre­ation ameni­ties.

“There is a huge com­mit­ment to hav­ing our res­i­dents lead as vi­brant lives as pos­si­ble and get­ting them out to ac­tiv­i­ties on the in­de­pen­dent liv­ing side,” Jack­son said.

Con­trib­uted im­age

Con­struc­tion of the new Brightview Se­nior Liv­ing fa­cil­ity in Shel­ton is mov­ing along as de­vel­op­ers pre­pare to bring 161 units of se­nior hous­ing to the city.

Hearst Con­necti­cut Me­dia file photo

The for­mer home of Young's Nurs­ery on Dan­bury Road in Wil­ton in mid-Au­gust as it is trans­formed into a Sun­rise Se­nior Liv­ing com­mu­nity.

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