The final major phase of Friendship Village of Bloomington, MN has opened its doors and is in full swing with new dining, admin spaces and independent apartments! This renovation is an adaptive reuse of an existing healthcare wing and has been totally reimagined by opening up the floor plan and utilizing as much of the existing structure as possible. The dining venue is not only a new special dinner destination on campus, but also completes the connectivity for indoor walkability for the entire campus. When the new Healthcare building was planned to move out of this wing and into its new state-of-the-art home, the connection back to the campus had to be put on hold. After nearly 4-years to the day, the connection has been restored!
The design concept called for removal of two existing wings, expanded parking with EV charging stations, new administrative spaces, two independent living apartments, a new specialty dining venue and an expanded courtyard with raised planters. One of the most impressive aspects of the outdoor garden area is the fact that the planters are maintained by a resident appointed garden committee. As soon as the planters were installed, residents were eager to get to work with their daily activities. The gardens are nestled between the new skilled nursing wing and the new west-side expansive dining patio.
In the photo above, you can see a large Oak table with a storied past. This table was built with wood that was harvested from an existing tree that had to be removed due to the new development. A company, rightfully called, “Wood From the Hood” takes existing trees and creates custom furniture from the stock wood. Through the drying and kiln fire process, this Oak tree now rests back on campus and has been given new life. A touching detail in things being renewed on the campus and inspiring the name of the new dining venue, ‘Oak Terrace’.
Admin spaces were also moved into this area to make way for a new marketing suite near the front of the campus. The campus is large and affords a really lovely experience as staff and residents traverse the corridors from private apartment wings to public dining venues, lounges and connection between all levels of care. The openness of the new renovation area brings new life into the existing skylight and new lounge, which now has connection to the outdoor patio with additional vaulted ceilings. The space is totally transformed.
The Gardens and Courtyard were designed as a collaborative outdoor activity space. While adjacent and accessible to the skilled nursing facility, it is also open and available for use by campus life or families at their convenience. Residents who maintain the gardens have really created something spectacular here as vegetables and flower varieties are thriving in its first season back.
The planters are fully irrigated and raised for easy accessibility. Routes between them have a feeling of a traditional garden with crushed stone beneath your feet, giving a feeling one might find at home, walking in their own garden in their backyard. Its a space that has begun cultivating renewed activity and community for families to work together in the garden.
Stay tuned for our full Friendship Village campus redevelopment post that will outline all the work that has been done on this thriving campus, an 8-year vision that has finally become reality.
All photos copyright of Bob Hallam Photographic