WHAT ARE THEY BUILDING?

‘Future hub’ of Chinese culture breaks ground on Seattle’s eastside

Aug 4, 2015, 10:00 PM | Updated: May 8, 2016, 10:01 pm

It was an event big enough to draw former Washington governor and U.S. Ambassador to China Gary Locke.

The groundbreaking for what is being described as a “future hub of Chinese culture on Seattle’s Eastside” was celebrated at the end of July.

The Aegis Gardens will be the first senior living community in the Pacific Northwest for Chinese-Americans, according to parent company, Aegis Living.

What are they building?

The groundbreaking drew several hundred people. Joining Locke was King County Executive Dow Constantine and Newcastle Mayor Steve Buri. Several Chinese dignitaries were also present.

“Our vision extends well beyond building a premier retirement community,” said Aegis Living CEO and founder Dwayne Clark. “We believe Aegis Gardens will serve as the Northwest epicenter for honoring, preserving and celebrating Chinese culture.”

The senior center will sit on 7.47 acres of waterfront property in Newcastle. The 110-home community will have access to Lake Boren.

“The community is poised to meet growing consumer demand from all corners of the Pacific Northwest,” according to Aegis.

According to Nielson, 92,000 Chinese-Americans live within a 25-mile radius of the location. Almost 5,000 of those Seattle residents are 75 or older.

“Aegis Gardens is the first of its kind in King County – the first senior living community designed with the needs of our growing Chinese and Chinese-American community in mind,” said Executive Constantine. “The lectures, musical performances, and other events open to the public will make a welcome contribution to our quality of life on the Eastside.”

When complete, the community will host civic activities and cultural exhibitions. It will also provide daycare services to promote multi-generational engagement.

For residents of the community, 24-hour care will be provided by staff fluent in Cantonese, Mandarin, and English. Medical care will be provided by the University of Washington Medical Center.

The site is located a block from the Bellevue city limits, where in the 1800s, immigrants from China mined coal.

“The Northwest’s Chinese-American community has left an indelible mark on the region, including the Newcastle neighborhood we stand in today,” Locke said. “The team behind Aegis Gardens has set out to preserve and honor Chinese culture, while serving Northwest families and their loved ones with the best possible care.”

Aegis Gardens is scheduled to open in 2017.

What are they building?

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‘Future hub’ of Chinese culture breaks ground on Seattle’s eastside