WOODRIDGE – An assisted living facility is being constructed on the site of a former nightclub near the border of Downers Grove and Woodridge.
Dover Capital recently broke ground on a four-story senior building at Route 53 and 75th Street that offers 76 assisted living apartments and 24 memory care apartments.
Developers also will be adding two additional structures on the same corner that includes compatible retail and possibly medical offices. Construction on those outlots, now in the preliminary planning stages, will begin as soon as fall 2017. The 100,000-square-foot main building, Cedarhurst Assisted Living and Memory Care, is scheduled to open next year.
“Our entire Cedarhurst community will be focused and dedicated to the care of seniors,” Cedarhurst Assisted Living and Memory Care President Joshua A. Stevens said. “Amenities will include restaurant-style indoor and outdoor dining, full-service salon, movie theater, resident library with computer lab, therapy space, activities areas and more.”
The project is on the heels of this summer’s opening of Woodridge Horizon Senior Living Community on Janes Avenue, which became the first senior housing development in the village. Horizon has 93 units – mostly one-bedroom apartments – available to anyone at least 62 years old who wants to live independently.
The need for this type of development has been increasing. About 10 years ago, a survey of residents revealed “an increase in interest in providing senior housing,” Village of Woodridge Director of Community Development Michael Mays said. “Residents are looking for opportunities to remain in the community as their housing needs change.”
The population of Woodridge residents age 62 or older has nearly doubled from the census in 2000, when seniors were 6.9 percent of the total population, to 2010, when seniors were 11.4 percent.
“Like most of the country, this population shift has created a lack of housing resources for the seniors of Woodridge. Our new Cedarhurst community will provide a much-needed option for seniors to continue an active lifestyle near their family and friends in Woodridge,” Stevens said.
Unlike Woodridge Horizon, assisted living provides meals, housekeeping and maintenance for seniors who can live on their own but want help.
“This area of Woodridge is very underserved from a high-quality senior living perspective,” Stevens said. “Moreover, the corner itself is on a highly visible commuter path, yet surrounded by a beautiful and peaceful forest preserve.”
Cedarhurst will be a big change from Zero Gravity, the teen nightclub that previously occupied the corner.
Although some residents have expressed concern about increased ambulance traffic, Stevens said EMS is rarely called to such facilities, and seniors who live by themselves may be more likely to call 911 than those in an assisted living building, where a nearby staff member may be able to help if they fall.
Stevens said the community will be private pay only but will accept long-term care insurance as well as veterans aid benefits. Cedarhurst will begin to compile a wait list approximately six months before opening and encourages anyone who is interested to visit cedarhurstliving.com or call 314-884-2000 for more information.
The village is already considering another next senior housing opportunity, which could pop up on the land currently owned by Gallagher at the southwest corner of Woodward Avenue and 83rd Street.
“In 2007, the comprehensive plan stated that area is designated for senior housing opportunities,” noted Mays. “There’s 22 acres. A continuing care retirement community would be an option there.”