http://pleasantonweekly.com/print/story/print/2011/04/22/construction-starts-at-long-delayed-stoneridge-creek


Pleasanton Weekly

Column - April 22, 2011

Construction starts at long-delayed Stoneridge Creek

by Jeb Bing

There's good news for the nearly 200 senior citizens who have already placed their deposits for homes in Stoneridge Creek, Pleasanton's new retirement community on Staples Ranch. Troy Bourne, vice president of planning and development for Continuing Care Communities, the company that is building and will operate Stoneridge Creek, said bulldozers are now grading the 50 acres his company is acquiring on Staples. A public groundbreaking will be held next month with the Stoneridge Creek health center and the first of 635 independent living condos and homes to be completed next year.

Bourne, who steered CLC's application process through an agonizingly long seven years of public hearings, workshops and environmental-impact discussions, told the Pleasanton Rotary Club last week that the start-up operations were both welcome news and long overdue. In one of his many appeals before the Pleasanton City Council -- and to emphasize just how long he had been seeking an approval for Stoneridge Creek -- Bourne said that during the process his wife had given birth to three of their children. With construction starting, Bourne has relocated his family from Southern California to Pleasanton.

Many of those who have registered for homes in Stoneridge Creek donned yellow shirts to fill the City Council chamber in a show of support for Stoneridge Creek. For some, there has been a sense of urgency since a requirement of being accepted into the retirement community is good health. During the years since deposits first were accepted, at least one applicant has been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. Even so, CLC has agreed to allow the applicant and his spouse to move in because of their deposit and the permitting delays by the city.

Stoneridge Creek will consist of a cluster of 635 homes ranging in size from 700-square-foot condominium apartments to single family homes in 20 different floor plans as large as 2,600 square feet. The complex will include 60 assisted living apartments, and the nearby health center will have 90 skilled nursing beds. Employees to be hired locally will include managers, nurses and staff to handle swimming, fitness and other programs. Security guards will double as First Responders in the complex, all trained in CPR. Surrounded by parkland, other amenities at Stoneridge Creek will include bocce ball, areas for gardening, a dog park, painting, art and dance classes, and water aerobics.

Bourne told Rotarians that the public's image of retirement facilities range from ocean view homes and golf courses for the very rich to stainless steel halls with green linoleum where many may remember visiting as kindergartners to sing Christmas carols. Stoneridge Creek is neither. It will look much like other upscale neighborhoods in Pleasanton, although restricted to those 55 or older. It's also pricey, though not prohibitively so for most Pleasanton homeowners. Costs will range from $200,000 for the smaller condos to more than $1 million for the larger homes. Yet unlike a typical development, Stoneridge Creek homes are not purchased or rented. No one actually buys their home, although it feels like that. The move-in costs are paid upfront much like a home purchase. No less than 75% of a "buyer's" investment will be refunded if the home occupant chooses to move out of Stoneridge Creek or, in the case of death, to the resident's estate. There's also a monthly service fee of up to $2,400 for the first occupant of a larger home, another $1,400 for a spouse.

After that, though, everything available at Stoneridge Creek is included, from the one meal a day to skilled nursing care whenever and as often as needed. Besides full long-term care, everything else a homeowner used to pay is covered, such as property taxes, home insurance, home maintenance, utility bills, landscaping and more. If a spouse needs care in the skilled nursing center, the other spouse can continue living at the couple's Stoneridge Creek home, which will be a short walk away from the health center.

Stoneridge Creek marks the first of several multi-million-dollar developments planned on Staples Ranch, a 124-acre undeveloped site at the southwest corner of I-580 and El Charro Road that was recently annexed into Pleasanton. An auto mall, retail center and a 17-acre public park that might also include an ice arena also are planned there, along with an extension of Stoneridge Drive through Staples to connect to El Charro Road and an extension of Jack London Boulevard into Livermore.

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