Design Center

Avalon Square

Type of Facility/Setting: Mixed-use and Continuing Care Retirement Community
Owner: Presbyterian Homes of Wisconsin
Chief Administrator: David Fulcher, President, (262) 547-9217
Architecture: KKE Architects, Inc., (612) 339-4200
Interior Design: Encompass Interiors, (888) 573-2513
Photography: Philip Prowse Photography
Resident Capacity: 27 Memory Care units, 52 Assisted Living units, 68 Independent Living apartments and Town Center Commons
Total Project Area: One square city block with a build-out of 227,510 sq. ft.
Construction Costs: $15,400,000
Total Project Cost: $22,800,000
Cost/Sq. Ft.: $68/$100

Downtown delight

Anchoring Waukesha’s central business district, Avalon Square celebrates the rich history of the city’s downtown. A mixed-use and continuing care retirement community (CCRC), Avalon Square offers senior residents many opportunities to participate in community activities by connecting them with the urban vitality of Main Street. Recognized for design excellence by the American Institute of Architects (AIA), the project required working closely with state and local government and forging public and private partnerships to expand the owner’s former one-building facility into an urban campus occupying a square city block.

A historic-preservation mandate for the project included renovating the existing circa-1928 building (opened as Avalon Manor in 1968) while respecting its fatade, and completely rebuilding an 1871 hotel, including a cupola that had deteriorated over the years.

“The project’s scale and use of materials were carefully designed to be sensitive to and compatible with the context of the historic downtown,” explains KKE Architects Principal Greg Woollums, AIA, head of the Designs for Aging studio.

Avalon Square offers a variety of lifestyle options within a continuum of care-from independent living to assisted living to specialty care, with an emphasis on serving those with Alzheimer’s and memory loss. The design of the complex includes distinctive entries corresponding to these levels of care, including the Main Street entrance for independent residents, a drop-off/canopy entry for assisted living, and a below-grade parking garage that can be accessed by both populations via separate elevator cores.

Available to all residents, the ground-level Town Center provides access to a bank, a chapel, a library, a museum/art gallery, a cafT/deli, a convenience store, restaurant-style dining, private dining, a computer networked activity/learning center, a barbershop/beauty salon, a fitness center, lounges, and a secure landscaped courtyard. Separate retail space provides convenient shopping for both CCRC residents and the entire downtown community.

“Avalon Square’s presence invigorates the downtown as it draws residents, their families and friends, employees, and members of the larger community to its services,” explains David Fulcher, president of Presbyterian Homes of Wisconsin. “Its unique location invents a new standard for senior residential living.”

Avalon Square’s articulated storefronts, awnings, signage, lighting, landscaping, and the re-created hotel loggia complement pedestrian activity and Main Street vitality. Its residents are engaged in diverse activities inside and outside the facilities, allowing them to fully participate in the mainstream of the community’s culture.

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