Local politicians, businesspeople and residents gathered at the Eddy Village at Beverwyck Wednesday, June 2, to hoist shovels and celebrate the groundbreaking on a long-planned expansion to the retirement community.
Two buildings will be built, housing in total 24 beds in private rooms. Residents will take meals and congregate in a communal space, and staff will prepare meals in an on-site kitchen instead of using a cafeteria.
The idea is to provide an experience that more closely resembles living at home as opposed to the institutional operation of a traditional nursing home facility.
It's a greenhouse style of design that was hailed by Beverwyck executive Director Doug Miller as a way to better maintain residents' dignity, independence and range of choice.
"It also embraces the individual as someone who has strengths and weaknesses," he continued.
Beverwyck, which operates under the banner of Northeast Health, had originally planned to build a larger facility with a dedicated Alzheimer's care unit and gained town approval for that project in 2006, but with so many Alzheimer's care beds in the area the decision was made to pursue the greenhouse facility instead.
The original buildout plan for Beverwyck drafted in the late 1980s called for a 125-bed nursing home facility, said Miller.
"Of course, over the past 25 years, the face of nursing care has changed," he added.
The addition will also add to the "continuum of care" offered to residents who often have changing needs, Miller continued, allowing them to stay at Beverwyck longer.
Assemblyman Tim Gordon, who lives near the retirement community, hailed this as a great benefit to local families.
"It helps people who have stayed here for a portion of their lives stay connected with their families," he said.
The new facility will be the fifth phase of building at Beverwyck. The expansion is expected to be completed in January of next year and will cost $6 million.