News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Local Business Search
Stock Summary
Dow17361.75166.33
Nasdaq4625.1659.02
S&P 5002013.5218.87
AEP58.330.06
Comcast55.120.77
GE25.840.17
ITT Exelis17.480.36
LNC54.221.32
Navistar35.250.39
Raytheon104.251.05
SDI22.870.31
Verizon50.1550.255

Boom time for Lutheran Life Villages

Retirement-living group to offer more locations, services

Friday, January 28, 2011 - 10:16 am

As the baby boomer population ages, Lutheran Life Villages plans a north-side expansion that includes buildings at Dupont and Union Chapel roads and on Coldwater Road in Fort Wayne and in Auburn.

“A better way of living” is Lutheran Life Villages' motto and describes its goal for fostering wellness among residents and staff as they build toward the future.

The retirement-living facility, with main campuses in Fort Wayne and Kendallville, celebrates its 80th anniversary this year as a provider of independent-living, assisted-living and nursing-care communities.

The organization plans to expand its Fort Wayne campus to offer more locations and services for retired residents.

Bruce Blalock, president and CEO of Lutheran Life Villages, said, “While I believe we have the south side of Fort Wayne well covered, the north would benefit from our presence as many have indicated a desire to move into a community of ours if we had something on the north side.”

The retirement facility was named The Lutheran Old People's Home upon its founding in 1931 in Kendallville. The Fort Wayne campus was founded in 1961, and in 2009 the Fort Wayne and Kendallville communities came under the name Lutheran Life Villages.

Lutheran Life Villages plans to build a $750,000, 8,000-square-foot assisted-living community near Auburn this summer for up to 12 residents.

“Eighty years of history has taught us a lot,” said Blalock. He added that the organization is “moving towards creating environments for baby boomers … This generation is geared for action, choices and living life to the fullest. We have adapted and are ready to provide that environment coupled with top-notch service.”

Lutheran Life Villages' expansion project includes building a $6 million-$8 million nursing and rehabilitation campus on Coldwater Road, expected to open in 2012 and provide a home to about 80 residents.

The largest expansion effort is to build a high-end independent-living and assisted-living community in the Dupont Road-Union Chapel Road area. The estimated cost is $40 million and will include 120 independent-living apartments, 40 assisted-living accommodations and 16 apartments. Construction is expected to start in late 2012 or 2013.

Both Fort Wayne and Kendallville campuses provide care for nearly 650 residents and employ more than 400 people. Nearly 100 jobs are expected to be available within the next two years.

Reflecting upon the future of Lutheran Life Villages, Blalock said the organization used to be “more based on what the resident needs,” but now has “moved toward their wants as well.”