An expansion project will begin this week at Longmont‘s Hover Senior Living Community that aims to add affordable, full-time skilled nursing care in a non-institutional setting.
In planning stages for the better part of a half-decade, that will house a total of 48 residents when the project wraps up next summer.
An official groundbreaking is set for Wednesday with site preparation to start in earnest next week. The first new residents are expected to be able to move in by late March 2019 and all four new buildings should be complete by the end of July 2019.
The new portion of the Hover campus — located on a 5-acre parcel at the northwest corner of Hover Street and Belmont Drive — will incorporate the philosophy and design elements developed by The Green House Project, a Maryland-based nonprofit that helps senior living operations establish skilled nursing facilities that provide a more homelike environment than is often found at institutional facilities.
The new cottages will provide residents with 24-hour care, as well as their own private bedrooms arranged around shared kitchens and communal space.
Once the skilled nursing component is added along with the new cottages, the Hover facility will be classified as a continuing care retirement community (CCRC). However, the campus will be different from other CCRCs in the state, Hover President Lisa Czolowski said.
“We‘re very proud about this; we will be the only (CCRC) in Colorado that will be able to hold its affordability and won‘t be asking for a buy-in,” she said. “In a typical CCRC, people generally have to pay a large amount of money up front before moving in. This allows them the guarantee that they‘ll be able to move to the next level” of care as they age and their health needs increase.
A site plan for the cottage-style buildings at Hover Senior Living Community. ()
“We aren‘t going to do that,” Czolowski said of the industry practice of charging buy-in fees, which can be hundreds of thousands of dollars. “We are going to have our community open for any income level.”
Project Manager Jennifer Vecchi said Hover staff worked with the national Green House Project team on financial studies to ensure the new cottages would be feasible without requiring buy-in fees.
“A big part of getting us to this point (to begin construction) has been that collaboration with The Green House Project,” she said.
Hover plans to set aside 25 percent of the new units for residents with Medicaid coverage. The remaining units will be market priced at rates that have not yet been determined, Czolowski said.
“We believe if we take care of our elders, the bottom line will take care of itself,” she said.
Czolowski credited the community‘s volunteer board of directors for their dedication, saying, “This project couldn‘t have happened without them — it‘s really a labor of love.”
Residents will be able to begin reserving rooms in the new cottages this fall.
Plans and architectural drawings call for the homes to be built in the Tudor architectural style of the surrounding structures.
Once complete, the new portion of the Hover Senior Living Facility would be the third Colorado operation to adopt the Green House model. The first two are in Loveland and Akron.
The Hover campus includes nearly 119 apartments and 51 assisted living suites. The expansion would increase capacity by about 30 percent.