Elder care facility proposed on grounds of St. Benedict’s Church

Shea Connelly’s site plan states the elder care facility on St. Benedict’s grounds will have three enclosed courtyards with a combined total square footage that is nearly twice the amount required by the city.  (Shea Connelly Development LLC)

St. Benedict’s Catholic Church hopes to build a high-end 138-unit senior housing facility on its 19.2-acre campus on 48th Street south of Chandler Boulevard.

Acting on the church’s behalf, Shea Connelly Development of Scottsdale has submitted a rezoning request to the city Planning and Development Department to rezone 4.62 acres to accommodate the facility.

Shea Connelly has scheduled a required neighborhood meeting for 6:30 p.m. May 16 at Pecos Community Center, not far south of the church, to discuss

the project.

In a letter to area homeowners, it said the facility would house 66 independent living units, 44 assisted living quarters and 28 memory care residences.

“Senior facilities are in high demand and providing these housing options on a church campus affords a unique opportunity to serve and support the medical and spiritual needs of the city’s elder community,” the developer wrote neighbors.

“The project has been proposed by St. Benedict’s Church and has enlisted a national senior care housing leader, Cogir Senior Living, to manage the facility,” the letter stated. “The goal is to being a state-of-the-art senior care facility to the church’s existing campus near 48th Street and Frye Road.”

Besides the church, which is undergoing an extensive interior and exterior renovation, the campus also is home to St. John Bosco Catholic School and a smaller building behind the church.

The facility apparently would replace that small building as the site plan indicates its location directly behind the church.

Shea Connelly is seeking a rezoning of the parcel from a Commercial Park/General Commerce Park classification to an R-3A residential zoning, which it says is compatible with the zoning of the area north and east of the campus.

“Approving this application will bring a much-needed housing option for seniors in and around this area of the city,” its letter to homeowners said.

Site plans submitted to the city

show that the facility would have three stories and stand almost 600 feet from 48th Street.

It would be “discretely located in the rear of the campus and well-screened from view,” the developer’s letter stated, adding that will “give residents a feeling of privacy and mitigate any perceived impact on the neighboring community.

“The elder care facility will boast three enclosed courtyards with a combined total of approximately 21,417 square feet, which

is nearly double outdoor space required by city code.”

Montreal, Canada-based Cogir Senior Living Communities owns or manages 63 facilities in eight states and Canada, according to its website. It owns eight senior facilities in Arizona, with two each in Scottsdale and Mesa and one each in Peoria, Marana, Glendale and Chandler.

Cogir Senior Living is part of Canada-based Cogir Real Estate, which was founded in 1995 as a multifaceted real estate development and management company.

Its senior living arm boasts that it is “passionate about customer service – with a human commitment.”

“As part of a well-known name in Canadian real estate, COGIR Senior Living draws upon 20 years of residential and senior living management, as well as hospitality expertise,” the company states on its website.

“It is this combination of French-inspired je ne sais quoi and West Coast spirit that make COGIR Senior Living residences so indefinably unforgettable.”

Like many high-end independent living facilities across the nation, it boasts fine dining options and other “amenities you’d expect at a fine hotel.”

Shea Connelly also developed a range of commercial and residential projects, including three senior living facilities in the Valley.

Like any rezoning request, its neighborhood meeting is the first step in a process that also will include public hearings before the Ahwatukee Foothills Village Planning Committee and city Planning Commission for recommendations to City Council.

Connelly said the hearings have not yet been scheduled. 

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