Not many residential projects include three chapels. The Sacred Heart at Monastery Lake retirement community is an exception. Overlooking a small lake and bordering a beautiful natural area, the complex offers its senior residents ample opportunity for prayer and peaceful contemplation. The community also offers many onsite amenities such as a bank, beauty shop, media center, craft room, guest suite and coffee bar.
The 208,000 square foot project combines a residential community for retired priests with 66 one and two bedroom independent living apartments for seniors. The two wings are connected by a “Main Street” commons area. The Main Street encourages and enhances social interaction within common spaces such as a Dining Room, Family Room, Library and Chapel. The main Chapel is two stories in height, seats 150 people, has a great view of a lake and is accented by a stone-clad tower. The Priests’ wing includes two additional chapels plus communal living and dining rooms. The entire building is constructed over a parking basement for safe access to transportation.
The project design was inspired by a traditional village. The architect introduced variation in specific design features, colors and textures between the Priests’ wing, Main Street and the Independent Living Apartments to allow separate identities for the different residents as well as to break down the scale of this large building. This is especially apparent in the varying patterns of differently hued brick. The project includes balconies in most of the apartments plus a roof terrace over the parking garage to take advantage of the beautiful views.
Due to the sloping project site and adjacent wooded areas, the project had limited access for emergency vehicles. The design and construction team had to work closely with the City fire department to provide acceptable emergency access.
The project needed to be economical to be competitive with other senior apartment projects on the market. Heritage Collection™ Designer Concrete Brick was selected for its durability and cost effectiveness. The chapel towers, which feature County Stone® masonry units with the look of hand-cut natural stone, provide a perfect foil for the warm red brick of the exterior walls. The Old World appearance of the materials further enhances the impression of a traditional village, and complements the natural surroundings.
The Priests who live in the building are very pleased with their new home. The Independent Living apartments have been well received and leasing has been so successful that a final phase of the project was approved to add 64 additional independent living apartments. The 106,000 square foot addition is currently under construction and is expected to be completed in the summer of 2013.