221 Bell Blvd. & Sidney St – 323 unit Seniors & LTC Facility

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| Published , updated March 4, 2024

A 55+ independent seniors community and a long term care facility will form a seniors community complex that fills in the southeast corner of Bell Blvd and Sidney St. It is the long term care facility that is set to receive the subsidies.

163 unit Wellings 55+ Seniors Community at 211 Bell Blvd.

A new 163 unit seniors community is coming to Belleville at 211 Bell Boulevard at the southeast corner of Bell Blvd and Sidney St. It will consist of:

  • 4 storey, 74-unit residential apartment building, including:
    • 34 1-bedroom
    • 40 2-bedroom
    • Accessory uses on the ground floor including a health club, bar, and restaurant
  • 18 bungalow townhouse blocks providing 89 units, including
    • 40 1-bedroom
    • 49 2-bedroom

as well as 133 parking spaces for the midrise building and 130 spaces for the townhouses for a total of 263. Vehicle access is proposed to be via one driveway onto Bell Blvd and 2 on Sidney St.

The land is owned by Galen Weston’s Choice Properties Limited Partnership (“Choice Properties”) and will be developed by Nautical Lands Group (NLGC Inc.) (2962 Carp Road, Carp, Ontario K0A 1L0) Wellings of Belleville Inc. (previously Wellings 2019 Inc.).

The Wellings Community concept is a vibrant active lifestyle community for adults (55+) wanting a balanced, simplified way of life. They operate with a 100% rental model with optional services for residents. The main building will have a restaurant/dining area, bar, personal service area, and fitness area for the residents.

Founder Kirk Hoppner, started with a vision to deliver viable senior housing options with home care in small communities across Ontario. Almost 25 years later, Nautical Lands Group (NLG) has designed, built and managed more than twenty communities and continues to innovate and transform the retirement living model.

Our business model includes design, construction, operation, and management of our communities, and we are recognized globally for our unique concepts. Our primary business currently, is designing and operating our carefree Wellings® 55+ communities. They are located in small rural and urban markets, catering to people who do not need care, and want to live in a community setting. We are expanding into Alberta in 2021.

Rent costs at existing Wellings Communities

For comparison, the much more modest and somewhat dated 112 unit Quinte Living Centre charges $699 per month for a studio, $967 for 1BR and $1050 for 2BR. It is a registered charitable non-profit corporation and member of the Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association that receives funding from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation and administered through Hastings County Social Housing Branch.

160 bed Neighbourhood Better Living long term care facility at 645 Sidney St.

Neighbourhood Better Living (Neighbourhood Better Living Belleville Inc.) is a new development of 160 long-term care beds announced on April 11, 2022 by Bay of Quinte MPP Todd Smith alongside municipal leaders and development business owners.

The build is part of the government’s $6.4-billion commitment to build more than 30,000 net new beds by 2028 as part of Fixing Long-Term Care Act, 2021.

The 160-bed facility is scheduled for a fall 2025 opening.

It’s exciting news for Bay of Quinte residents to see construction start for the 160-bed Neighbourhood Better Living long-term care home, Belleville’s first new build in the sector in 20 years,

Working with our partners from SigNature Communities, Clearway Construction and UniversalCare Canada, our government is committed to delivering the modern, dignified living experience vulnerable seniors deserve, right here in our community.”

Todd Smith, Bay of Quinte MPP

Mayor of Belleville Mitch Panciuk called it another exciting day for the city and said the city would make every effort to smooth the path toward construction of the facility so construction could start as soon as possible. The mayor ended the announcement proclaiming, “I’m going on the record.  Todd Smith is the best MPP this community has ever had.” Panciuk had donated $2,500 to Todd Smiths’ campaigns since 2014.

$87 million in Ontario government subsidies over 25 years

The Ontario government approved a construction subsidy of $20 to $25 per bed per day for a period of 25 years, plus $35 per bed per day since they started construction by August 31, 2023. It is one of 67 fast-tracked long-term care home projects that qualified for the extra subsidy.

With 160 beds, and a $57.03 per bed per day subsidy (based on mid-size market and breaking ground before August 31, 2023) for 25 years, this amounts to subsidies of $83.26 million. In addition, they can receive a maximum development grant percentage of 10% up to $24,923 per bed, meaning UniversalCare could receive just under an additional $4 million to development costs, for a total subsidy of $87 million over 25 years.

To continue receiving the subsidy, the operator must meet the applicable requirements and conditions set out in this policy and in the Development Agreement.

Neighbourhood Better Living is a partnership between SigNature Communities Inc., Clearway Construction Inc., and UniversalCare Canada Inc.

UniversalCare Canada

UniversalCare is a privately owned for-profit company that operates 11 long term care homes in the province, and growing. It will operate the new Belleville facility and the one in Madoc.

Joseph Gulizia, president and CEO of Universal Care Canada Inc., said his organization is pleased to bring its experience in providing care to the project.

A 2020 Toronto Star analysis of provincial inspection reports found that UniversalCare racked up more than two dozen citations for violating the Long-Term Care Homes Act and its regulations, including failing to protect residents from abuse and neglect, failing to use safe transferring and positioning devices, and failing to ensure all staff participated in an infection prevention and control program.

In response to this report:

We are proud of our track record of care since 2010 and we are also proud to say that currently, of the 19 long-term-care and retirement homes under our management, 17 have no active cases and the remaining two have three active resident cases combined

Joseph Gulizia

UniversalCare is represented by Loopstra Nixon LLP lawyer Quinto Annibale, who formally registered and previously served as a director on the board of the fake parents group “Vaughan Working Families.” The group was found to be in violation of the Election Finance Act for running full-page ads in major Canadian newspapers attacking teachers and defending the Ford Government. Ford appointed Annibale vice-chair of the LCBO in 2019. He was selected to chair Villa Colombo in 2020. Annibale donated over $46,000 to the PC Party of Ontario since 2014.

SigNature Communities Inc. and Clearway Construction Inc.

Anthony Di Battista is the president of Clearway Construction Inc. and SigNature Developments Inc. and principal of Neighbourhood Better Living. Sebastian Mizzi is the vice-president of SigNature Communities Inc.

Sources

Wellings senior community

Long term care facility

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