New senior living facility opens in Shelton; Should employ about 85

Benchmark Senior Living officially opened the doors of its new community in Shelton with a reception and ribbon-cutting ceremony on Tuesday night.

Participating in the ribbon-cutting are, above, from left, Greater Valley Chamber of Commerce President Bill Purcell, Benchmark Chairman and CEO Thomas H. Grape, Shelton Mayor Mark Lauretti, Benchmark at Split Rock Executive Director Douglas Cormack, Benchmark at Split Rock resident Tom Nickse, and Benchmark President and Chief Operating Officer Stephanie Handelson. (Photos by Brad Durrell)

Will have 92 apartments

The Benchmark Senior Living at Split Rock facility will offer 92 apartments, with 72 for traditional assisted living and 20 for those needing memory care.

The facility at 708-A Bridgeport Ave. is in the rear of the Center at Split Rock Shopping Center, near Outback and Vazzy’s restaurants. It cost $25 million to build.

As one of the community’s first residents (or “founders”), Nickse was given the honor of cutting the ribbon. A few hundred people attended the reception, which included a short presentation, food and drinks, music and tours.

‘A warm embrace’

The Shelton location is the 50th senior living community to be opened by the Massachusetts-based Benchmark, and its 17th site in Connecticut.

“We believe this to be the most state-of-the-art technological facility in the country,” Grape said during his remarks.

Grape, a Fairfield County native, also thanked Shelton city and business officials for offering “a warm embrace” to the company.

Lauretti said by opening in Shelton, Benchmark was coming to “a very caring place where people like to get involved.”

Should employ about 85 people

Construction began in March 2013. Once fully operational, Benchmark Senior Living at Split Rock is expected to employ about 85 people.

Residents are expected to begin moving into their residences next week.

The three-story building will offer amenities such as a bistro/pub, computer lounge with wireless access throughout, age-appropriate exercise room, beauty salon with spa, and wellness/treatment suite.