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Work starts on Wanaka retirement village

By AIMEE WILSON in Wanaka - The Southland Times
Last updated 05:00 01/10/2009
SITE INSPECTION: Presbyterian Support Otago boss Gillian Bremner, right, and Elmslie House/Wanaka Retirement Village manager Penny Fisher on site at the new development.

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The kids in Wanaka are getting a new primary school and the elderly will soon have a new luxury retirement village.

Wanaka's second biggest construction project this year is under way next to 30-resident retirement home Elmslie House.

The $8.5 million project, also by Presbyterian Support Otago, was officially started yesterday with a blessing onsite to mark the beginning of construction.

The 24-unit complex, featuring 14 villas and eight apartments, is being built by the Breen Construction Company and is expected to take 52 weeks.

Employing up to 60 workers at its peak, the home will cater for an older age group, as a lifecare rather than a lifestyle village, making use of the existing hospital at Elmslie House.

Chief executive Gillian Bremner said the retirement village was still in the process of being registered.

"We are 10 days away, so the selling process doesn't start today because of that," she said.

An "overcooked" property market had stopped Presbyterian Support from going ahead withthe new resthome any earlier, she said.

"We are hoping this time next year you will be here for the grand opening," she said.

Tenders for the new apartments and villas close on November 20. Starting prices range from $350,000 to $450,000.

Elmslie House manager Penny Fisher will also manage the new Wanaka Retirement Village when it's completed.

In July, Peter and Dee Gordon, of Wanaka, announced construction of their Aspiring lifestyle retirement village would start before Christmas.

The 13ha development on Golf Course and Cardrona roads includes 110 standalone villas, 46 apartments and a 650-bed hospital, resthome and dementia unit.

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