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Samaritan elder-care “village” has topping off ceremony

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Although Tuesday was the official “topping off” ceremony for Samaritan Summit Village, the assisted-living facility under construction on the outskirts of the city, the high beam was raised only about 20 feet due to high winds.

The ceremony, on the construction site at Washington Summit on outer Washington Street, recognized the highest point of the facility being completed, or “topped off.” Attached to the signature-emblazoned high beam was an evergreen shrub, which Samaritan Medical Center CEO Thomas H. Carman said was a symbol of past and future good luck for the site.

The ground-breaking for the $72 million project was in late September. The estimated completion for the elder-care complex is February. If all goes according to plan, occupants may be moving in by March.

“Our community has given our senior living facility support since it was only an idea,” said Joan Treadwell-Woods, the chairwoman of the facility's board of trustees, during the ceremony.

Samaritan officials also revealed the new name for the facility.

Out of more than 80 submissions for the former Samaritan Senior Village, three were combined to create “Samaritan Summit Village.”

Anne M. Clark, a nurse at Samaritan Medical Center, was recognized as one of the name creators.

“I like how one of the gentleman said it's not going to be a nursing home,” she said. “It's going to be a village. It's going to be a great asset to the community.”

Lecesse Construction Co. project executive William O'Hanlon said the facility is going to be a home for the new residents.

“It becomes even more meaningful when the client is Samaritan Medical Center,” he said. “We're providing a home in this assisted -iving and nursing design.”

There will be 80 Medicaid-eligible beds and 40 enhanced residence beds in the assisted- living area. In the skilled-nursing area, there will be 168 beds in the finished building.

Spectators were encouraged to look into the assisted-living bedrooms behind the common area before the series of speeches in the afternoon. Most of the rooms still looked like wood-and-wire skeletons but a handful had walls installed and were painted.

Bedrooms will feature bay windows and walk-in closets. The spacious common area at the front of the facility will have a gift shop, hair salon and cafe in addition to being a gathering space. Residents will all have a microfridge but no microwave.

“We reduced dining halls to dining rooms,” said RLPS Architects project architect Eric J. Endres. “Showers are provided in every residence room. All these things we did with the staff and administration were all with the residents in mind.”


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