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New Retirement Village: rebuild spirit on quake anniversary

Park Lane Retirement Village opening epitomises rebuild spirit on earthquake anniversary

Stage one of the new $80-million dollar Park Lane Retirement Village in Christchurch was opened today by the Prime Minister, the Right Honourable John Key, at a gathering which included Park Lane investors and All Blacks Andy Ellis, Dan Carter and Corey Flynn, district health board representatives, residents, families and suppliers.

The shareholders behind the development include current All Blacks Richie McCaw, Dan Carter and Kieran Read, former All Blacks Leon MacDonald, Corey Flynn, Mark Robinson, Aaron Mauger, Ian Hurst and Greg Somerville, former Crusader and now Scottish international Sean Maitland, and well-known property investor Bill Horncastle of Horncastle Homes.

The Park Lane Retirement Village project was initiated before the Canterbury earthquakes with the Prime Minister visiting the cleared site prior to the commencement of building work six months after the February, 2011 earthquake.

With the $20 million first phase of the project now completed, the upmarket retirement village offers affordable luxury to 87 residents needing a range of living options from semi-independent through to rest home and hospital care. There are 45 studios and apartments and 42 care beds in the beautifully appointed retirement village with five villas with two bedrooms and an attached garage soon to be developed.

“We are delighted to be able to show the Prime Minister the work that has gone on since his last visit and talk with him about our plans for stages two and three of the project,” said Park Lane director and facility manager, Jenny Dempsey.

Park Lane directors Jenny and Alan Dempsey are experienced aged care operators with 15 years in the sector owning and operating large facilities in Dunedin, New Plymouth and Blenheim prior to returning to their home town of Christchurch.

“Our company purchased the camp here in Whiteleigh Ave in 2010 with the intention of developing a retirement village. The location is superb given that it is so central and in a rapidly growing area with Tower Junction close by. Once the Park Lane project was drawn up we decided to sell our 170-bed facility in Blenheim and return home to Christchurch to bring Park Lane to fruition. As the investment that was needed grew we attracted other private investors to the project.”

The first resident moved into Park Lane last week and Jenny’s own mother Mary Halligan is currently living at Park Lane for respite care.

Dempsey said the Park Lane project was an example of how a wide range of people can invest in the Christchurch rebuild. “Our company is made up of private investors, ordinary Cantabrians and some well-known ones, who have seen a way to make a sound financial investment that helps rejuvenate our city and provides a high-quality boutique facility for older citizens. We really believe Park Lane epitomises the spirit of the rebuild.”

Stage two of the development will begin in April with additional villas being built for occupation early next year. “At this stage our vision for stage three of the project is to build a club house and swimming pool for residents as well as independent living units.”


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