September 14, 2018 8:27 pm

New $9-million Pioneer Lodge seniors home in Fort Macleod opens

WATCH ABOVE: A new seniors complex in Fort Macleod is officially open. The $9-million Pioneer Lodge seniors home can house up to 50 residents and is double the size of the building it is replacing. Malika Karim has reaction from the new building's tenants.

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After three-and-a-half years of planning, the new Pioneer Lodge seniors home in Fort Macleod is officially open.

The $9-million semi-assisted living facility includes 30 studio-style, and 10 one-bedroom units. The 40,000-square-foot building is double the size of the old lodge, which was demolished two years ago.

“From a dingy, non-accessible old seniors lodge, to a bright, airy, inviting, safe, warm, accessible home for our seniors,” chair of Willow Creek Foundation, Maryanne Sandberg, said.

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Ninety-one-year-old resident Raymond Chester is one of the residents who use to live in the old Pioneer Lodge and says the change is nice.

“Oh, definitely better,” Chester said. “The eating area — before we all had our own tables and now we’re mixed, which I think is a good idea.”

Glenna Moorey also used to live at the old lodge and agrees their new home is an improvement.

“It’s more spacious, the rooms are much better, just everything is improved of course over the old one,” Moorey said.

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Amenities include a hair salon, accessible washrooms with a large spa room, a library, and a large communal kitchen.

Updates for a centre that’s vital to the entire region.

“This facility serves the town of Fort Macleod, the town of Grannum, and the surrounding MD of Willow Creek residents and any relatives of that,” said Sandberg. “It’s been a very welcome facility. It’s not only welcoming for the seniors in this area but I think for a lot of our staff, it provides jobs.”

Residents began to move into the lodge at the end of July, and management says there are still units to be filled.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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