Sunset Is Developing A New Campus


    GEORGETOWNTOWNSHIP — In response to a waiting list that has stretched to as much as three years for some dwellings, Sunset Association is in the midst of preliminary site development of its third senior housing development in OttawaCounty

    “This gives us an opportunity to meet the demand that we’ve had for housing,” Sunset COO John Thorhauer said. “We’ve got a waiting list that is extremely significant and we just don’t have the ability to accommodate everyone. It was decided that we needed to do this in order to meet our mission.”

    Located at the southeast corner of Port Sheldon and

    18th Avenue

    in GeorgetownTownship, the 331-unit

    Waterford Place

    is a 526,000-square-foot development expected to cost in excess of $50 million in Phase 1


    The majority of the dwellings will be independent apartments, both one- and two-bedrooms and one- and two-bedrooms with dens, along with 48 assisted living units.

    The Christman Co., in partnership with Elzinga & Volkers Inc., has been contracted as construction manager of the project. Richard Kiley of Columbus, Ohio-based Dorsky Hodgson and Partners designed the development.

    Featuring a streetscape design, the 700- to 1,200-square-foot apartments will connect to a large community center meant to create a downtown atmosphere. On this “

    Main Street

    ” will be found a bank, beauty shop, café, general store, wellness center, library and other amenities.

    “At the current facility, if you walk down the main corridors, it looks like you’re walking outdoors,” explained Christman vice president Dan Lamore. “They want it to look something similar to a cruise ship or a mall.”

    Plans also include a 150-car covered parking structure and an eight-acre lake.

    Ground was broken on construction of the lake earlier this month and should take several months to complete.

    Primary construction is projected to begin on the bond-financed project in the spring of 2005. Phase 1 should take 13 to 15 months.

    A reservation period is currently underway. According to Thorhauer, a significant number of presales must be reached before construction financing will be triggered.

    This is Sunset’s third facility, adding to its Sunset Manor & Village in Jenison and the Brookcrest skilled nursing facility in Grandville.

    “Based on our demand currently, we will probably be ready to start another one as soon as Waterford is complete,” Thorhauer said. “That’s if our current demand continues.

    “There has been a great deal of development in this market recently, and there is going to be a saturation point, but we feel it’s significantly higher than what the market is currently.”    

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