Revitalization project seeks to restore and modernize aging campus that serves low- and moderate-income seniors.

PictureRichard Moore, Linda Hawes Clever, David and Catherine Dow, Susan Badger, Barbara Solomon, Anne Montgomery, Kathleen Foote, Joanne Spotswood and Stephanie Moulton-Peters at the groundbreaking for The Redwoods Revitalization Project. Courtesy photo.

With one of Mill Valley’s crown jewels in need of restoration, community leaders, elected officials and residents of The Redwoods broke ground this week on a $32.8 million project to restore and modernize the 40-year old-campus.

“This is more than just a campus upgrade,” The Redwoods CEO Barbara Solomon said. “Seniors and their families want the best possible retirement experience. Revitalization is about better meeting the needs of today’s seniors – who are active, vital and engaged. It is also about creating a community that will be attractive to future generations of seniors– including Baby Boomers.”

The initial phase of the project, which is slated for completion in spring 2016, will include the following:

  • Modernized and rehabilitated independent living units
  • Improved dining room, commercial kitchen and expanded dining options
  • A new center that will focus on fitness, wellness and health education
  • A new café that will provide an additional social and dining environment
  • New entry and parking, with safe pedestrian access
  • Sustainable campus grounds and systems – solar energy, native plants and more 

Redwoods’ officials expect the kitchen remodel to be finished by September and the dining room by the end of 2014. A new entryway and lobby will scheduled to be done by June 2015. Renovations of the independent living apartment renovations are expected to be completed by January 2015. A second phase, slated to begin in 2016 pending the city of Mill Valley approvals and outside funding, will include construction of additional affordable living units.

Solomon said that residents of the Redwoods were involved in the planning process, spurring the inclusion of things like the new café, the new center and the layout of the living units. The driving focus was on maintaining the community’s innovative environment and its focus on “the physical, emotional and spiritual well being of its residents,” she said.

“With the projected increase in older adults and the limited availability of affordable rental senior housing in Marin, the need for communities like The Redwoods is more important than ever,” said Joanne Spotswood, a member of the Redwoods board of directors and co-chair of the Revitalization Capital Campaign.

The Redwoods is paying for the project via $28.2 million in government bonds, $2 million in Redwoods reserves and a $2.6 million capital campaign. The organization will launch the community phase of its fundraising campaign this summer. They hope to raise just under $1 million in that campaign.

The 411: Founded in 1972 by the Community Church of Mill Valley, The Redwoods provides multi-level, affordable rental housing, services and care to 340 low- and moderate income seniors from across the Bay Area and beyond. Click here for more information about the Revitalization Project.

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