McHenry County aiming to open new Valley Hi memory care wing in fall 2024

McHenry County Board to vote on bid for project at June 20 meeting

Valley Hi Nursing Home on Tuesday, May 10, 2022, at 2406 Hartland Road in Woodstock. Valley Hi is working on a series of renovations to its facility, while also planning for a memory care wing to be created in the coming years.

After more than a year of planning, McHenry County is taking concrete steps toward bidding out a new memory care wing at Valley Hi Nursing Home.

Two McHenry County Board subcommittees – its finance committee and the Valley Hi Nursing Home committee – met this week and unanimously recommended a bid totaling a little more than $3.1 million.

The construction, which includes remodeling two hallways and creating common space and a courtyard, is expected to be carried out by Libertyville-based Efraim Carlson & Son, according to county documents.

The committee approvals this week mean the bid can go to the McHenry County Board for a final vote. The board will meet again June 20. It also will be available to discuss at the board’s Committee of the Whole meeting June 15, communications and project manager Alicia Schueller said.

If all approvals line up, the project could start by August and wrap up by fall 2024, with occupancy in the spring of 2025, Valley Hi Administrator Tom Annarella said.

“These guys want to get in and get started before the ground freezes,” Annarella said at the Tuesday Valley Hi committee meeting.

The project also should not affect the nursing home as a whole much, as the two hallways targeted for improvements have been blocked off for a while, Annarella said at the Thursday finance committee meeting.

Bids were due at the end of May, and four vendors submitted proposals. One of them – Stuckey Construction – did not sign its bid and was disqualified. The other two were Doherty Construction at more than $3.6 million and Bear Construction at more than $3.7 million, according to county documents.

Beyond a couple of questions about the timeline, costs and potential revenue of the project, County Board members across both committee meetings did not give many comments on the item.

The project is expected to be paid using what remains from a $15 million rebate that dates to 2019, when residents were paid back a portion of the facility’s surplus. There still is $5 million sitting in that fund.

Annarella said Thursday that the project is expected to raise revenue, but to what degree is not yet known.

The bid comes more than a year after Valley Hi wrapped up a series of other renovations at its facility. The aim of the newest development is to help address a critical need for memory care in McHenry County, officials have said.

Along with the new memory care wing, Valley Hi offers long-term care, as well as skilled, intermediate, hospice and respite care.