119-unit apartments for seniors could come to Crystal Lake

Developer, city staff says these senior apartments are ‘much-needed‘ in the area.

A development company is looking to put 119 senior apartment units on Terra Cotta Avenue in Crystal lake.

The site, at 731 E. Terra Cotta Ave., currently is a vacant wooded area.

Clover Communities, based in New York, is proposing 115 two-bedroom units and four one-bedroom units for the development, according to city documents. Clover has developments in nine other states, with 60 other projects.

Clover is looking to expand into the Illinois market, as there is very little competition for the market the company deals with, company Development Director Beth Ernat said.

“Crystal Lake is an ideal location with their senior population,” Ernat said, pointing out that the site is located next to an existing senior facility, Sunrise Assisted Living, and that its downtown access was also a major plus. “We’d like to be near shopping, amenities, health care and churches, and this property has excellent access to [these].”

Although the development will be a 55-plus community, residents usually are in their mid-70s, Ernat said.

It is a market-rate community, meaning it is not income restricted. Two-bedroom units would start at about $1,600 a month, Ernat said.

Included with the senior apartments are a community room, library, game room, coffee bar, fitness center, salon and additional storage. Outside, a patio and courtyard areas are planned.

Construction on the building is expected to cost about $12 million to $13 million, Ernat said.

Clover is aiming for a spring 2022 groundbreaking, with leasing to start in 2023.

“We’re early in the process yet and still require some approvals from Crystal Lake, but we’re very excited to keep moving forward and be a part of the community,” Ernat said.

At the last Planning and Zoning Commission meeting, commissioners were excited for the development, City Planner Elizabeth Maxwell said. They did not take a formal vote on it, however, as only a conceptual review was on the agenda.

“It’s a much-needed product,” Maxwell said. “It’s active adult, senior, age-restricted, independent-living apartments.”

A lot of people want to “age in place,” Maxwell said, and stay in the community they’re from as they get older.

“They don’t want to leave,” she said. “They know where their doctors’ offices are. If they have to go 30 or 40 miles away, they lose that support system.”

This senior development will give older people a way to downsize into a rental property where they have support and management onsite and have a new community for “this next stage in their life,” Maxwell said.

Next steps for Clover include drafting a formal plan and then making an actual planned unit development application to the city.

“We’re anticipating it’s going to take a month or two or so to get back into the process for the actual zoning entitlements,” Maxwell said.







Cassie Buchman

Cassie Buchman

I cover Crystal Lake, Algonquin, Cary, Fox River Grove, Prairie Grove and Oakwood Hills for the Northwest Herald.