Creating a new 'environment'

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The community offers sections that serve various aspects of memory-care.
The community offers sections that serve various aspects of memory-care.

Although most senior living communities are adding memory care wings and floors to their facilities, The Goodman Group has gone a step further and built an entire community dedicated to it. Located in Naples, FL, the 60-bed, 61,000-square- foot Villa at Terracina Grand features a multi-dimensional, experiential approach to promoting cognitive wellness for residents.

The community features sections called Soulful Environments, designed to appeal to different aspects of memory care. For instance, the Nature Immersion Room provides residents with a multi-sensory nature-based experience that helps reinforce a daily sense of routine and circadian rhythm, which plays a key role in memory function.

“The most complicated aspect of dementia is keeping residents in the natural rhythm of the day,” said Robyn Johnson, director of brand and strategic initiatives who created the concept.

“So we use light, sound and smell to convey a sensory experience associated with different parts of the day — morning is the sound of gulls, midday is busy birds and end of the day is crickets and frogs. And the stars come out at night,” Johnson explained. Another Soulful Environment is Arabella's Garden, a therapeutic landscape focusing critical attention on the design and creation of a landscape to promote health and wellbeing, emphasizing the importance of evidence-based design to meet the needs of residents with dementia, as well as those of visitors and staff.

FOCUS ON MEMORY CARE

John Goodman, the late founder of Chaska, MN-based The Goodman Group, was driven to continually innovate with healthcare design, and Villa at Terracina Grand underscores his desire for a community dedicated to the various stages of dementia and Alzheimer's, said Burt Elmer, director of architecture for JBG Design & Development, a division of The Goodman Group.

BROADER APPROACH

“Memory care has become more of an issue because people are living longer,” he said. “So we've looked at opportunities for innovation. John wanted a stand-alone memory care unit that treats all stages, from early to late. From an architectural standpoint, the basis was to broaden what we offer and expand it into a refined piece as we study memory impairment. Evidence-based design was John's dream and this community provides that.”

Opened on April 28, 2015, the community took 13 to 14 months of construction to complete.

Kim Campbell, wife of country singer Glen Campbell (who has Alzheimer's) attended the opening and said she fully supports the community's objective.

Following John Goodman's lead, Villa at Terracina Grand provides “an atmosphere of freedom,” where residents can travel in a loop that “always brings them back to the center,” Elmer said.

The layout adheres to the Goodman principle of “dignified freedom,” so residents are able to navigate the building safely while experiencing indoor and outdoor areas.

Between the Nature Immersion room, courtyard garden and natural light through ample windows, residents have a natural rhythm for the time of day, which fosters peace and tranquility, he said.

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