Heritage Senior Living/MSP Real Estate Inc.

MSP ConstructionHeritage Senior Living’s communities offer a wide range of care options and amenities to residents.
By Jim Harris

Senior citizens typically have a choice to make when the time comes to leave their homes and settle into a new community specifically geared toward them. Depending on their needs, seniors can choose to live in an independent living community; an assisted-living complex, where they are given some assistance with daily activities such as dressing, cooking and taking medications; or a memory care facility, which provides 24/7 support and care to people with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.

The needs of many seniors, however, change over time.  Someone who initially chooses an independent living facility may eventually need a higher level of care, which generally necessitates a move into another community.

Seniors who make the decision to move into a community owned and operated by Heritage Senior Living in Wisconsin, however, need not be concerned about life changes that would otherwise force their relocation. Heritage’s communities encompass a range of care types and lifestyles that includes independent living, assisted living and memory care.

“Our communities offer a continuum that allows people to truly age in place,” says Mark Hammond, director of development for Mendota Heights, Minn.-based MSP Real Estate Inc., of which Heritage is a branded subsidiary. “When seniors make the decision to leave their homes and enter a senior community, they want to limit the number of times they will need to move after that.

“If they want the convenience of independent senior housing, they can come to one of our campuses, but as their care requirements change over time and they need help with activities or daily living, we can provide those all under one roof,” he adds.

A Hands-On Approach

Since its founding in 1988, MSP Real Estate has developed more than 2,400 total housing units, 1,950 of which are directly oriented to seniors, Project Manager Dan DiFrancesco says.

In addition to Heritage Senior Living, MSP Real Estate also oversees MSP Property Management Inc., a subsidiary that manages more than 400 affordable housing and market-rate housing units in Minneapolis and Wisconsin; and MSP Construction, a general contractor that builds Heritage’s communities and MSP’s other developments. The company in August 2015 also entered the commercial office leasing market when it acquired the 420,000-square-foot, six-building Mendota Heights Office Center. MSP Construction box

MSP’s executives take a direct role in all of the company’s senior housing projects. “Our owner is an architect, so we are very hands-on during the construction and design phases,” Hammond says. Each project has a distinct style theme, and many Heritage properties include high-quality finishes such as natural woodwork.

All Heritage properties are designed with resident comfort in mind. The company’s most recent developments include therapy pools and “pubs,” which serve as central gathering places that can be used by residents and their families. Other features common to the brand’s properties are hydronic radiant heated floors and custom three-panel solid core doors, Hammond adds.

New Communities

MSP Construction next year will conclude work on the two newest additions to the Heritage portfolio. The company broke ground in October 2015 on Heritage Lake Country, a 124-unit complex in Delafield, Wis. The project will be completed in January.

The 123,000-square-foot building will feature a three-story independent living wing that will connect to a two-story wing, which will feature assisted-living units on its second floor and memory care on its first, DiFrancesco says.

The building’s exterior is comprised of a mixture of brick, stone and fiber cement siding. Building amenities include a pub area as well as a theater room, a large therapy area, a small convenience store, an arts and crafts room, a salon, a fire pit and patio area with grills, a courtyard, underground parking and a private dining room residents can reserve for family gatherings.

MSP Construction in December 2015 broke ground on a 136-unit senior housing project in Kimberly, Wis., which is slated for a spring 2017 completion. Like the Heritage Lake Country project, the 141,000-square-foot Kimberly development will include a three-store independent living building adjacent to a two-story assisted-living and memory care community. The property will also include many of the same amenities as Heritage Lake Country, DiFrancesco notes. 

Units in both properties will include high-end finishes including stainless steel Energy Star-rated appliances such as a refrigerator, dishwasher, microwave and washer/dryer in the independent living units. The assisted-living apartments will include a kitchenette, a stainless steel microwave and refrigerator.

The Heritage Lake Country and Kimberly developments will also include large windows and high-efficiency building shells. The properties are being built to Wisconsin Green Built Home standards.

‘Like Home’

MSP’s newest Heritage projects reflect the company’s overall growth strategy. “There is a substantial need for more senior housing across the country, and in Wisconsin specifically,” Hammond says.

The company has a goal of building two to three projects annually. “We pride ourselves on providing places that feel like home and not an institutional setting,” he adds. 

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