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Luxury senior living center proposed on Moores Lane

The proposed master plan for the Canterfield at Franklin would include a $15 million, 67,000-square-foot assisted living center on Moores Lane. Source: City of Franklin

Developers of an assisted living center in Franklin are hoping to break ground in October on the proposed $15 million luxury, hotel-style facility on Moores Lane.

City leaders saw the proposed master plan for the Canterfield of Franklin for the first time Thursday.

The site was approved in 2007 for an assisted living center that stalled after the housing market collapsed. Now, Atlanta-based Medical Development Corp. is planning an upscale facility that would serve “typically more ambulatory-type seniors” who are “younger and more mobile,” said Allen Porter, the younger half of the father-son company.

“It doesn’t feel institutionalized at all, it feels like a really nice living space,” he said.

The 18.25-acre property on Moores Lane near Franklin Road won’t need to be rezoned, but it will come back to city leaders for approval because of the changes in density and drastic differences in building locations on the site plan. Only 6.5 acres will be used for the commercial development. The rest will be preserved as open space, said Greg Gamble, the design consultant working on the project.

The previous plan showed 40,000 square feet of retail and commercial space and a 97,000-square-foot assisted living facility. The new proposal has 8,000 square feet of commercial retail space, 67,000 square feet for the assisted living center, and five one-story independent living villas behind the main facility.

The developers will aim to create the feel of three neighborhoods in a “continuum within one building,” said father Winston Porter.

“We try to make it look pretty A-class,” Allen Porter said.

The company also develops, owns and operates Marriott and Hilton hotels, which has influenced its approach to senior living.

“It’s like walking into a really nice hotel,” Winston Porter said. “It hits you right from the beginning and it’s like a ‘wow’ factor.”

Medical Development Corp. isn’t purchasing the corner retail space but the Porters hope it will attract some type of medical office facility.

The 71-unit assisted living center will be predominantly three stories, with the exception of a one-story wing in the front with 20 units for residents with memory care needs, such as Alzheimer’s disease. 

The company has developed two other identical centers to the one proposed in Franklin – the first opened 18 months ago in Cumming, Ga., and the second began operating six months ago in Oak Ridge.

The developers are hoping to begin construction in October, with an anticipated 2015 opening date.

The plans will head to the Franklin Municipal Planning Commission in late April or May.

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