New center for seniors

December 13, 2004

A groundbreaking will be held Wednesday to launch construction of the new building for the Adult Day Care of Martinsville and Henry County.

Clark Construction of Bassett was awarded the contract for the $1.2 million project following a Thursday vote by the center's board of directors. Clark's bid was the lowest of the three submitted, according to Alice Culler, executive director of the center.

The building "should go up fairly quickly" and is targeted to open in mid-2006, Culler said.

It will be named the Oliver and Mildred Edwards Adult Day Care Center in honor of the late Oliver Edwards, one of the first clients at the center when it opened in April 1990, and his wife, a longtime volunteer at the center.

The Edwards' son, Ray Edwards, and his wife, Sallie, of High Point, N.C., formerly of Collinsville, have pledged $250,000 to the building project and are expected to attend the groundbreaking at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Culler said.

The building will be next to the present center location at 433 Commonwealth Blvd., Martinsville.

Plans, prepared by Eden & Associates, P.C., of Martinsville, detail a single-story masonry building with a covered drop-off area. The building will be more than 8,000 square feet, compared to the 4,700 square feet in the current building.

That will allow for increased enrollment, according to a release from the center. The center is now licensed by the state to enroll 25 people. Culler has said she hopes the new building will be licensed for 42 or more people, based on square feet of activity space.

The new center also will offer craft and media rooms, nurses' office, covered rear porch, fireplaces, beauty salon and bathing facility.

A large central activity area with clerestory windows and a 25-foot ceiling will create a light, open feeling, the release stated. Areas on the side and back of the building will be landscaped and fenced, according to the plans.

Both the new and existing building will share a larger parking area.

More than half of the $1.2 million has been garnered through fund-raisers or has been pledged, Culler said, adding that fund-raising is continuing.

The center has received a $250,000 pledge from The Harvest Foundation and a $100,000 grant from the Virginia Department on Aging Respite Program.


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