When Sienna Senior Living's new $55-million long-term care facility is complete in 2023, the residents moving over from the current Waters Edge will enter their new 160-bed home, named by one of their own.
The new home will be known as Northern Heights, the winning name suggested by resident Renee Everingham. "It just popped in my head," shared Everingham when asked for the inspiration behind her submission.
In announcing the Northern Heights name, Denis Filiatrault, the executive director at Waters Edge said, "Our new care community will reside along the heights of the escarpment, offering beautiful views of Lake Nipissing."
Everingham's proposal also observed residents of the home "are at the height of their lives."
Sienna will donate to the charity of Everingham's choice as part of a prize package that also includes a catered dinner at the home served by Waters Edge management.
Sienna indicated it wanted to start a new era of long-term care in North Bay with a fresh start, including the name change. Waters Edge was previously known as Leisureworld and is located on William Street, on the shore of Lake Nipissing in West Ferris.
Resident council president Elaine Lebold shared that there is much excitement about the new name and the building itself.
"This is one of the biggest development projects in the City of North Bay," Sienna CEO Nitin Jain said during the announcement of the development. "Our company is committed to spending close to $55 million. We expect it to create many construction jobs and we will be adding additional jobs with the 12 new beds. We are very excited."
The current building has 148 total beds, including six convalescent care beds. However, as long-term care facilities are legislated away from operating with ward rooms (up to four residents per room), vacated beds are being left empty in those accommodations. Waters Edge currently fluctuates around 110 beds in use.
In 2018, as part of the future redevelopment, 12 additional long-term beds for Waters Edge were announced by the Liberal Wynne government's Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, bringing the total to 160.
The new development is to include all one and two-bedroom retirement suites for both independent residents and those who require assisted-living situations and will close the William Street facility. No wards. This means all 160 beds will be available to residents.
The design for the new three-storey facility includes five wings of 32 residents with dining rooms for each wing. There will be two shaded courtyards and private gardens that may be used for visits.