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More details have been announced about a new high-rise building to be constructed on the site of the former Steinbach Family Medical centre at 333 Loewen Boulevard. Cheryl Dueck, the owner of G & E Homes, says demolition will start in November, as soon as the last tenant moves out, with construction to start right after that. She expects it will take 18-24 months to build the 100,000 square foot structure with completion scheduled for late 2019. Dueck adds they have given the project a name.

"The name of the project is Prairie Sky. We're very excited to get started on it. We've got the preliminary drawings very close to being complete. Prairie Sky will be the first in the province to develop a new generation of long-term care. We're very excited to implement the new guidelines that have been adopted by the regional health authority and this will be the first building of its type."

Dueck says the plans have been altered a little since a presentation to city council in early June. Instead of underground parking, the indoor parking will be at street level. Dueck also says four floors of the nine-storey building are designed for the care of seniors including personal care, assisted living and independent living. Other floors will be leased to health-related businesses and professions plus there will be a rooftop restaurant.

"The rooftop restaurant will boast beautiful views of the prairie sky. It will be our own restaurant. It's not a chain restaurant. We are working together with an owner of many, many restaurants. He is helping us design the menu and the layout."

Dueck notes the personal care beds in this facility will be unlike any other in the area.

"Our design and interior fit and finish will be such that all of us would want to live in a place like that, going away from the present-day institutional type care home. We call it the small home model so it'll feel more like a home and the fit and finish will be more homey."

Dueck says this facility should help ease the shortage of personal care beds in Steinbach.

"I'm troubled by the fact that people, who've lived in our community for their entire lives and have served the community, now have to go other communities for their care. It separates families. It's difficult for spouses to go and see their spouses in a care home and I just feel this is a very great need in our community."

Dueck notes the design of the building includes massive outdoor terraces with gardens where people can go and relax and enjoy a fire in the evening or a walk through the gardens or even plant their own gardens. She adds they will also bring in the arts, music and plays to make it an all inclusive place for people to enjoy life.

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