Almost 100 elderly residents of a crumbling seniors home are to be relocated lock, stock and barrel at a cost of $6.7 million to a former hotel.
Lions Manor on Fentiman Place in Steveston will be shut down by the fall of 2013.
The dilapidated, 40-year-old building is “no longer adequate to meet the complex care needs of residents,” according to a Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) memo.
A few years ago, health officials were forced to close 36 of the original 129 beds due to the deterioration of the facility.
The remaining 93 residents will be moved to the former Executive Inn Express at 9020 Bridgeport Road in busy north Richmond, a far cry from the idyllic surroundings of Steveston.
VCH’s senior media relations officer, Anna Marie D’Angelo, said work on the renovation of the currently vacant hotel is already underway.
But she stressed the new location is very much intended to be a temporary solution.
“It’s still to be worked out what will happen (with Lions Manor),” said D’Angelo.
“Lions Manor was built in ’72 and was never designed to cope with the complex care needed for its clients today.
“The rooms were closed a few years ago as a matter of safety.”
D’Angelo said she believes the former hotel, where the residents are moving to, was used during the Olympics, so should be in “pretty good shape.”
“It’s going to be an improvement on what they have now,” she added.
“They will also have a secure garden space, it’s going to be better for all concerned.”
VCH’s mental health, addictions and residential care director, Natalie McCarthy, said in a memo to staff, residents, and their families that the new location will be a “significant improvement over the current, aging facility.
“Preliminary planning and design work has been completed for the interim site, incorporating features such as: a secure, landscaped outdoor garden; interior courtyard; lounge and activity areas.”
The temporary site will also have improved accessibility for residents with mobility challenges, according to McCarthy.
McCarthy said she recognizes the move will be a “stressful and challenging process.”
“In order to ensure the smoothest transition possible, VCH will employ a specialized, experienced, healthcare moving company.”
VCH is continuing to work on a long-term solution for the current Lions Manor site, said McCarthy and will be “completing a business case for a permanent replacement facility that will be submitted to the Ministry of Health for approval.”