The Highline Times
El Dorado West Retirement Community at 1010 SW 134th St. and Ambaum in Burien celebrated their service to the community for over 35 years, and broke ground today on a new $14 million facility which they say they hope will serve the community at least another 35 years. Phase one will be three stories, phase two, two stories, both to be completed in about two years. It will have room for 102 residents, about 20 more than the current population.
El Dorado West is a family affair, founded by William Brown, 89, in December, 1975. Three generations now own and operate a Federal Way-based company including El Dorado West and 13 other retirement communities, all in Washington State, called Village Concepts. William retired and his son Steven is the CEO and President of Village Concepts. Steven’s son, Stuart, is its Chief Operating Officer. All were at El Dorado West and made speeches under the driveway awning. They thanked Columbia Bank for its financial assistance.
“We are really trying to retain as many residents as we can while we rip down part of the building, and build it up again,” said Stuart during his speech. “We will keep those who are here by moving them into the new building. We are looking to the future, offering amenities to our residents that they expect. This is an aging building. We can’t get walkers and wheelchairs through the bathroom doors.”
Steven said that Burien has been very helpful and enthusiastic with his family’s business plans.
“When we opened this building it was one of the first of its kind in the Seattle area,” said William. “Seattle always had nursing homes. They had ‘class 1′ nursing homes with heavy care, and the ‘class III people’ who could get up and ambulate had to live together with the very sick. I took a chance (by offering a class III facility). We could keep folks here at a lesser rate. And they were happier, more gregarious together.”
“I want to congratulate the Browns,” said Lynn Wallace, President and CEO, SW King County Chamber of Commerce. “This is what makes Burien a great place to live in, to work in. Without folks like you we wouldn’t have the quality of life and wonderful things we have in Burien,” she said, referring to the Browns. “We will have the Chamber scissors ready for the cutting of the ribbon when you are done and ready to open the doors to the community.”