DONE DEAL

Meadowlark Assisted Living Facility buys old hospital lot
Thursday, June 25, 2020
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The Meadowlark Assisted Living Facility secured its future in Columbus last week with the purchase of the building and lot it currently occupies, as well as the empty lot where the old hospital once stood.

Caslen Living Centers Inc., which owns the Meadowlark Assisted Living Facility, purchased the properties for $1.95 million — which was the appraised value of the properties and buildings.

Mark White, who co-owns Caslen with his cousin, said the facility has a demand for retirement housing and could see 14 retirement units and 14 assisted living units in operation in the near future.

Other possible plans include a memory unit, although that is in the very early stages, White said Tuesday morning.

There are currently 19 units that are a combination of efficiency and one-bedroom apartments, as well as four retirement units.

The properties, which Stillwater County owned, were sold at a public auction last week, with the bidding starting at $1.95 million, which was the appraisal amount.

Caslen was the lone bidder, although a handful of other interested parties had inquired about the properties, according to Stillwater County Commission Chairman Mark Crago.

Crago had previously said that the county would only sell to a party on the agreement that the facility remain an assisted living facility for at least the next seven years. That is an important element as the commissioners have acknowledged the strong public sentiment to have Meadowlark remain an assisted living facility and have said that is a priority.

MEADOWLARK RESIDENTS AND COVID-19

When asked how Meadowlark residents are holding up, having been isolated for approximately five months due to the COVID-19 pandemic, White said they were struggling. Depression is common and the lack of face-to-face contact with family and loved-ones is taking a toll.

That situation will hopefully improve in the immediate future, thanks to Governor Steve Bullock's directive issued Wednesday that now allows nursing homes and assisted living centers to permit visitors.