PORTLAND, Ore. -- — The retirement community that sits along the Willamette River, next to Marylhurst University, is about to double in size.
The new community will not include land from Marylhurst University, which is closing due to dwindling enrollment.
A group of Catholic nuns named Sisters of the Holy Names Jesus and Mary own the Mary's Woods property and development.
The existing community is home to about 425 people. You have to be 62 or older to move in but you do not need to be Catholic.
Now, another 300 are expected when the expansion is finished over the next year and a half. Units are selling long before they are built.
“A lot of the folks that are coming in to stage two are coming in from Lake Oswego, and West Linn,” said Cheri Mussotto-Conyers, Director of Marketing. “So we have a huge senior population in Lake Oswego, growing in West Linn. A great number of the folks that are coming in are coming in from this area.”
A big motivation, she added, is to spend their senior years in a community and not grow lonely or isolated at home.
With many baby boomers looking for alternatives, sales are brisk.
“We started taking pre-sales, reservations for it. We opened it up and within six weeks we were 70-percent pre-sold,” Mussotto-Conyers said.
“We went ahead and approved stage 2 of the phase two and so we only have 13 apartments of the 198 apartments left,” she added.
The expansion includes assisted living, independent living, retail stores and a work out facility that will be open to the public and a large community center.
More work is taking place underground.
“Well over a million dollars under the ground here on this part of the project, well over that. That’s not counting excavation, and below grade foundations and all of that. So there's miles of cabling and wire and that type of thing,” said Don Hynes, who is acting as the owner’s representative.
The project is estimated at $90 million, but international trade wars are felt locally in the construction business and the prices may go up.
“There will be impacts that show themselves from in the ground foundations through finishes. Some impact will probably be seen somewhere throughout the rest of the building,” said Morgan Fredrickson, the Project Manager for R&H Construction.