Officials from Fellowship Community, a continuing care campus in Whitehall, hosted a groundbreaking and dedication ceremony for Beil Court, Fellowship Villa and the Zentz Community Center yesterday.
Beil Court will feature 22 independent living townhouses with occupancy scheduled for fall. The townhouses are named in honor of Fellowship Community founder, Rev. James Beil.
Fellowship Villa, a two-story building scheduled to open in spring 2014, will house 12 one-bedroom independent living apartments and 35 private and semi-private personal care rooms. Amenities include an exercise area, wellness center, game room and common social areas.
The Zentz Community Center, named in honor of Fellowship Community President/CEO, Robert Zentz, will house 350 seats for community use. The organization has about 150 independent living residents on campus and is expected to grow to about 200 with the aging population of the Lehigh Valley, Zentz said.
Zentz said the prime purpose of the center is to provide gathering space for its independent living residents. Fellowship Community serves as a central meeting place for a host of organizations, including the Whitehall Area Chamber of Commerce, Whitehall Lions Club, the Whitehall Relay for Life and other groups, but the community would like to add more space.
Zentz serves on numerous boards, including chairman of the board of directors of Sacred Heart Hospital, trustee and chairman of the board planning and project development committee of Cetronia Ambulance Corps, president of the Whitehall Area Chamber of Commerce, president of the Whitehall Chamber Foundation, and more.
The organization went through a bond issue and refinanced on its existing bonds to pay for the project, said Zentz. The total estimated cost us $38 million. About $15 million out of that amount is for the construction costs, he said.
Construction of the new buildings is already under way and once complete; this project would probably mark the end of the Fellowship expansion, since the organization would have to acquire more land, said Zentz.
Fellowship Community hired Arthur Funk & Sons Inc. of Lebanon as the construction firm to do the work, which is the same firm that built six other projects for the organization, said Zentz.
Fellowship Community is located at 3000 Fellowship Drive in Whitehall.