Sunrise Senior Living prepares Jacksonville home for Alzheimer’s patients

Publish Date:

Saturday, May 23, 2009

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News Organization:

Jacksonville Business Journal

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An international senior living development company is building a residential project for people with Alzheimer’s disease, its first project in North Florida.

Sunrise Senior Living Inc. plans to open the 65,000-square-foot facility this fall at 4870 Belfort Road next to St. Luke’s Hospital. The assisted living and Alzheimer’s care facility will be able to offer more than 90 residents a variety of amenities and services.

“Sunrise is excited to bring this new community to Jacksonville and believes the area’s demographics make it a great place for its first community in Northeast Florida,” company spokeswoman Sara Krueger said of the new location.

Referred to as one of the company’s “mansion projects” because of its upscale, home-like setting, the facility will also offer a special program for those with onset memory loss.

McLean, Va.-based Sunrise Senior Living (NYSE: SRZ) operates about 450 facilities around the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom and Germany, including eight others in Florida.

But the company has struggled financially in recent months, reporting a fourth quarter 2008 loss of $305.6 million and announcing that if it did not restructure its debts to the satisfaction of its creditors it would be forced to file for bankruptcy protection, according to the Washington Business Journal.

The company struck a new deal with lenders at the end of April and in May announced a cost-savings plan that included laying off 150 employees, mostly at the company headquarters, and terminating the chief financial officer.

Sunrise Senior Living reported less of a loss in the first quarter 2009, losing $18.2 million, or 36 cents per diluted share, compared with a net loss of $33.1 million, or 66 cents per diluted share in the first quarter 2008.

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