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More Assisted Living for Trumbull?

The Continuum Co. wants to build a 121-bed facility on Reservoir Avenue on the site of the former Henderson's Hardware Store. They had a preliminary review before the Planning and Zoning Commission.

Trumbull already has convalescent homes, adult daycare centers and an assisted living facility.

But there are not enough assisted living facility beds in town, according to Attorney John Fallon, whose client wants to add a 121-bed facility down the road from Middlebrook Farms on Reservoir Avenue.

No definite plans have been filed yet, said Town Planner Bill Levin.

"The fastest growing population is 85 and older," said Meredith Brake, Continuum's chief operating officer. She said she has run other facilities in New York and southern Connecticut.

Bruce Eichner, Continuum founder, said he was inspired after helping his 88-year-old mother.

"My mother and my mother's friends don't want to go to Florida, Arizona or Nevada," he said. "This is all about the quality of service."

"There is one facility in the geographic area and it's an older facility," he added, referring to Middlebrook Farms.

The proposed facility would have 80 units for assisted living and a dementia wing with 40 beds. About half of seniors older than 85 have some sort of dementia, according to Brake.

"Trumbull is a great town to be in," Brake said, noting that Trumbull is Central location with access to major highways. The business also doesn't generate much traffic, although residents could have cars if they wanted.

In addition to serving seniors, the facility would create 100 jobs and offer activities, and services such as hairstyling and nail salon work and transportation to stores, Brake said.

"Seniors can still have independence and not feel like a burden," she said.

Many residents of Continuum's other facilities have lived past 100, the COO noted.

Zoning board members had concerns from potential variance needs to parking and its effect on neighbors.

Member Rich Deecken said access to public transportation and the Merritt Parkway is not as easy as it looks. He added that, "We're kind of creating a 'senior row' on Reservoir Avenue," although he would not say if that was good or bad.

Eichner said familiarity is important. "People who live in this area, they don't want to go to some other place," he said.

Board Chairman Tony Chory said he liked the facility's design, which has not been finalized yet.

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