Nearly 40 years ago, Southminster was one of the first businesses pioneering SouthPark’s development.

The background: The nonprofit retirement community launched in 1987 as the brainchild of two prominent churches in the area.

As the Southpark area grew and prospered, so did Southminster, continually raising the bar for retirement living.
Today, Southminster has completed an eight-year expansion project to meet surging demand and further cement itself as an integral part of Charlotte.

Why now: When Southminster first launched, the oldest baby boomers were around 40 years old. Now, many from this massive generation are looking to relocate to retirement communities.

Securing a spot is competitive, with many Charlotte residents joining Southminster’s waitlists well before their 80th birthdays.
Here’s a rundown of the project and what’s still to come.

What’s new

In the first phase of the expansion, Southminster completed several advancements:

Built a 200,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art health center.
Built 86 new apartments, increasing total Independent Living residences by 27 percent.
Implemented a “small-house” model of care that replaced the institutional environment of long-term care with a patient-centered philosophy.

Looking ahead

Here’s what to expect over the next phase of the expansion.

More construction. Southminster is renovating two dining rooms and the main corridor. Outdoor amenities including patios, fire pits, walkways, and exercise spaces are also in progress.
Employee retention and engagement. According to Lisa McClellan, Vice President of Human Resources, “COVID took its toll on employee gatherings and engagement opportunities, so we are redesigning our HR priorities to fit the needs of our people.”
Increased community philanthropy. Southminster recently announced a collaboration with The Ivey, a Charlotte non-profit devoted to serving individuals living with early memory or cognition concerns and their caregivers. They’ve also deepened their long-time partnership with The Shepherd’s Center of Charlotte, a local non-profit that offers lifelong learning programs, free transportation and Medicare counseling to seniors.

What Southminster is saying: “When our Board started down the road of creating our new strategic plan, the goal was to develop a living, breathing plan that would guide our organization and its stakeholders into the future,” says Ben Gilchrist, Southminster President and CEO.

“Part of that plan will be to offer expanded services to a broader market throughout the region in the years to come.”

Read article at Axios.