Ground was broken Thursday on a $75 million retirement facility on land the developer says belonged to the founding family of the Hixson area.
“This was the Hixson homeplace for 200 years,” said Greg Vital of Independent Healthcare Properties LLC.
The project, Greenbriar Cove at North Chickamauga Creek, will be completed over a period of three to five years, said Mr. Vital, whose development partner is Franklin Farrow.
The 20-acre property will be similar to the company’s 100-acre Greenbriar Cove development in Collegedale, but smaller and without single-family homes.
Greenbriar Cove at North Chickamauga Creek is at 5501 Old Hixson Pike, next to the future Hixson Middle School, which is under construction.
“We cannot think of a grander opportunity to use this land,” said Carol Hixson.
She and her father, Sherman, were among several Hixson descendants to attend the groundbreaking. The family had owned the Greenbriar Cove and middle school sites since the 1790s, Mr. Vital said.
Phase 1 at Greenbriar Cove will include a 50,383-square-foot Morning Pointe Assisted Living Center, according to a statement. The 70-unit building will cost $9.25 million to build, and will have an Alzheimer’s disease care unit in a separate wing. Morning Pointe of Hixson is expected to open in fall 2009.
The second phase will be a 120-bed skilled nursing and rehabilitation center in conjunction with Life Care Centers of America, worth $15 million to $20 million, Mr. Vital said. Phase Three will be a 150-apartment independent living retirement building.
Chattanooga City Councilwoman Linda Bennett said the development will contribute to the city’s efforts to retain local retirees, as well as attract out-of-state residents, which fuels the economy.
“Being able to age in place and find a way to stay in the community you love is very important,” she said.