The growing market for senior living facilities has lured two new projects by an out-of-town firm to the Richmond market.
Kansas-based Bickford Senior Living has plans to construct two group care facilities in Chesterfield and Henrico counties as it takes its first steps into the Virginia market.
Bickford has its eyes on two sites: 4.5 acres at 11201 Big Oak Lane, just off West Huguenot Road and 7.58 acres off Ridgefield Green Drive, between John Rolfe and Ridgefield parkways. It has yet to close on either, said Jim Theobald, an attorney with Hirschler Fleischer representing the company.
Bickford will go before the Chesterfield County Planning Commission for the Big Oak Lane facility on Nov. 18 to rezone the site. Henrico County’s Planning Commission will hold a public hearing for the other project on Nov. 13 during which Bickford will request rezoning and a conditional use permit.
Theobald said Bickford operates 49 similar facilities throughout the country, mainly in the Midwest. Bickford is also attempting to open locations around Fredericksburg and Suffolk.
“There’s a real demand for these types of facilities,” Theobald said.
Each 37,000-square-foot building will take about a year to build, Theobald said, and the company hopes to start construction in the third quarter of next year. He would not comment on the cost of the projects.
Kansas-based architectural firm Kazmaier & Associates has already been assigned to the projects. A general contractor has not yet been selected.
The new locations will match the general design of Bickford’s other single-level residential units. The facilities are licensed to support 60 rooms and beds, 16 of which will be for what the industry calls memory care – those residents with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.
Theobald said the company expects to have employees work in shifts, with 12 to 15 working during the morning and afternoon hours and four to five at night.
The Henrico site was going to be the location of a new episcopal church, Theobald said, and the plans underwent a great deal of negotiating with neighbors over traffic patterns before they were finally scrapped. The Bickford plans have so far worked around the surrounding community’s requests.
Bickford’s push into the market comes as Washington, D.C.-based Holladay Corp. is working to redevelop the former Brandermill Inn and Conference Center site in Chesterfield County into a group care facility.
The company bought the dilapidated property at 5800 Harbour Lane earlier this year for $1.93 million, said Charles Hutchens, director of development and acquisitions with the Holladay Corp.
The existing structure on the site will be knocked down. It is not yet clear when construction on the new building will begin, Hutchens said, but it will likely take 15 months before it is completed.
Holladay will seek to have the property rezoned and will ask for an amendment to a conditional use permit for the site at the Nov. 18 meeting of the Chesterfield County Planning Commission.
The facility will have 90 rooms, also with a unit for patients with dementia or Alzheimer’s. It will be the Holladay’s fourth group care facility, with two in Washington, D.C., and a third in New York.
The business will employ between 35 and 40 workers.
Hutchens would not say how much Holladay plans to spend on the project.