HomeLawrence LedgerAssisted living facility application continues March 15

Assisted living facility application continues March 15

The Lawrence Township Zoning Board of Adjustment will continue its public hearing on an application for an assisted living facility on the site of the historic William Gulick House at its March 15 meeting.

The 7 p.m. meeting at the Lawrence Township Municipal Building is the fourth one in a series of meetings on Care One at Lawrence LLC’s use variance for the assisted living facility.

Care One at Lawrence LLC is seeking a use variance to build a 170-bed facility on the 6.4-acre property on the corner of Route 206 and Province Line Road. A use variance is needed because an assisted living facility is not allowed in the Environmental Protection-1 residential zone.

The applicant has proposed constructing a 113,391-square-foot building with 118 private rooms and 26 semi-private rooms in a three-story building on the site of the William Gulick House.

The application proposes moving the William Gulick House to a new lot that would be carved out of the 6.4-acre parcel. The new lot would be close to the corner of Route 206 and Province Line Road.

Previous testimony notes it would take up to 18 months to move and restore the house, which has been vacant since the 1970s, according to the application’s Architect Max Hayden.

The three-story house was built by wealthy farmer William Gulick in 1855. The house was built in the Italianate style and remodeled in the 1920s to reflect the Colonial Revival architectural style.

In testimony at the zoning board’s Feb. 15 meeting, representatives for Care One at Lawrence LLC explained the building’s layout and how the proposed assisted living facility would function.

The facility proposes to group residents together, according to the amount of help they need, said Lisa Rhoads, the vice president of operations. Residents on the first floor will need less care than residents on the second floor. The third floor will be set aside for residents with memory issues or dementia.

The doors will be locked for security reasons, Rhoads said, adding the facility will be staffed around the clock, with fewer employees on site during the overnight hours as compared to the day shift.

Project architect Michael Pomarico said they propose to make the assisted living facility’s appearance “as homelike as possible” noting the front entrance incorporates many details from surrounding homes. He mentioned bay windows, a gable roof and balconies. The siding would be a combination of brick and artificial cedar shake-look shingles.

The building wraps around a central interior courtyard that is open to the sky, Pomarico testified. Direct access is proposed to the courtyard from the first floor, and outdoor covered decks on the upper floors.

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