Ground-breaking for Grand River Care Center on Friday |

Ground-breaking for Grand River Care Center on Friday

Alex Zorn

Exterior schematic designs of what will be Grand River Health's next senior care center in Rifle.


What: New Grand River Health long-term care facility

When: 1:30-3 p.m. Friday

Where: 701 E. Fifth St., Rifle


Grand River Health will hold a ground-breaking ceremony for its long-awaited new long-term care center on Friday, March 15 at its future site on Fifth Street.

“We’re very excited to break ground on the Care Center project,” Grand River Health Construction Manager Connie Wilmot said in a press release.

“We know how important this project is to the community, as well as the staff and residents of the current care center,” Wilmot said. “We took great time and care to design a facility the community can be proud of. We are confident the community is going to love the new facilities and amenities this new Care Center will provide.”

GRH district voters approved the new care center construction and hospital expansion in November 2017, as the 50-year old E. Dene Moore Care Center was in dire need of repairs or replacement.

The brand new nursing care center will expand services and provide western Garfield County families with a more modern facility for years to come. Once completed, the old facility will be torn down.

 The new center provides a neighborhood concept, which will consist of five sections and a total of 87 rooms. Four “neighborhoods” will focus on long-term care and skilled nursing, while the fifth, which will have 15 rooms, will be dedicated to memory care.

The design is meant to mimic a community and foster interactions between residents, according to the project planners.

Each private room will have its own bathroom. That’s a significant improvement over current conditions, where residents share a room and a bathroom with as many as three other residents, according to project planners.

“I think the residents are most excited about having their own bathrooms,” Paul Rice, director of activities at the Care Center, said in the release. “They have been very involved in the design process from the very beginning and their excitement grows daily as they are watching the pre-construction activity on the site.”

While the care center renovation remains the larger piece of the overall project, the planned expansion to Grand River Hospital is meant to better accommodate the growing demands for health services in the region.

“The hospital expansion will begin in mid-June,” Grand River CEO Jim Coombs added. “We staggered the start dates of the projects on purpose to maximize the use of construction crews and subcontractors, which will be most cost effective.

“The patient expansion will feature 25 private inpatient rooms, a cardio rehab center, and expanded infusion services,” he explained. “Some of the space will be shelled for future use, much like the three-story medical office building was in the 2009 expansion. That building is now at capacity.”

The construction process will be updated regularly on the Grand River Health website. Construction on the two projects is expected to be completed by mid-2021.

(Editor’s note: This story has been revised from the Citizen Telegram print and earlier web version to correct an error. The existing E. Dene Moore Care Center still stands, but is being replaced with a new facility.)

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