Answers to common questions about the proposed project.

Is this project filling a need for Marco residents?

Absolutely – an urgent one. Our extensive research indicates there is demand for at least 362 ALF and memory care beds within a five-mile radius of the site – that is, including only Marco Island, Isle of Capri, Goodland, and Hammock Bay. After carefully listening to the concerns that Islanders raised last year, we redesigned and downsized our earlier, larger proposal.

Marco residents will finally get a facility for both assisted living and memory care at community scale, providing a desperately needed option to stay in the community we all love.

The approval for a new state-of-the-art urgent care facility will upgrade the medical services needed by Marco residents today.

What will the project look like?

The overall size will be 10 acres, down from 12 in last year’s proposal. Of that, five will be retained by NCH. The ALF will occupy approximately three acres, and about 2 acres will be converted into a beautiful park to be donated to the city. The plan results in only one net building addition to the 10-acre campus.

Please visit our Renderings page to see pictures!

What happens if there is a hurricane?

First, this will be one of the safest buildings on the island, with all-concrete construction, backup electrical power, and built-in utilities at the highest standards. As required by the State of Florida, the facility will have an annually reviewed evacuation plan.

Additionally, as per Florida law we will contract with a transit company to have dedicated transportation on call year-round to safely evacuate all the residents to sister communities in an expedited manner should that become necessary.

How will this affect EMS services?

An estimated 266 Marco residents are currently receiving Home Health Care, Many EMS calls stem from single seniors and couples dealing with relatively minor incidents that staff and nursing at an ALF could handle in the facility. Thus an ALF would decrease the number of 911 calls and lighten the load on Marco’s EMS services. When necessary, more serious needs will be handled by the proposed NCH Urgent Care center.

In addition, Watermark will acquire a Limited Nursing Service specialty license, which requires a nurse to be present 24 hours a day to practice within the scope of their licensure, adding nursing services to the facility’s broad range of amenities.

Will this increase traffic on the Island?

Our detailed traffic studies, as reviewed by the City of Marco Island, indicate that any increase due to the ALF will be negligible. Staffing for the entire building, when full, will be approximately 32 people during the day, 24 in the evening, and 10 at night. Staggered shift changes and off-peak delivery times will ensure that the facility will not cause spikes in traffic. Additionally, this project will impact traffic less than virtually any other potential use of the land.

Will this project change our community?

Only for the better, by letting residents stay residents as they age with dignity. Marco Island deserves to maintain its strong community, and the project would facilitate that.

Market studies by Integra Realty Resources, a national senior living specialist, show that the vast majority of residents of assisted living and memory care facilities come from within a 5-mile radius of the facility. In this case, that area includes all of Marco Island, Goodland, Isle of Capri, and Hammock Bay. The few who come from outside the area come because they have a primary caregiver currently living there, usually a child.

How is this project different from the last proposal?

We made the project much smaller, removing more than half the size and beds. The buildings have a smaller footprint, and the ALF is now three stories tall. At 35ft tall (plus 1ft to comply with FEMA regulation), the edifice will require no variances or height deviations – consistent with single family zoning districts throughout the island.

The new ALF has 86 units of assisted living and memory care, and there are no Independent Living apartments.

The project will have much more open space, and The ALF building will be set back from the Villas at Waterside by approximately 300 feet.

We’ve also added a 1.87-acre neighborhood park along the waterfront with parking and pedestrian access from Heathwood Dr., and from San Marco Rd along the waterfront.

What happened to the fully equipped hospital that NCH was supposed to build on the site?

Deltona obtained governmental approvals to build Marco Island before Collier County adopted an impact fee ordinance to fund schools, parks, etc. Similar to other developers of that era, in order to obtain governmental approval of their master plan and to provide for the needs of a future community, Deltona set aside lands for churches, parks, fire stations, utility plants, schools, beach access (the donation of Tigertail beach to Collier County and Residents Beach for Islanders), and for medical needs. Deltona transferred the subject property to Collier County, which later conveyed the subject property to an entity controlled by Naples Community Hospital.

Deltona placed deed restrictions on the property and, like the Residents Beach, which ended up being controlled by MICA, those deed restrictions, to the extent still in place, are currently enforced by MICA. In the last few years a school site, known as Tract K, was sold by the Collier County School Board with the understanding that the proceeds be used on Marco Island for the new high school (MIA). 

In order to accommodate the concerns of MICA and the community as a whole, in connection with a 2018 amendment to deed restrictions, NCH agreed that all proceeds from the sale of this property would be retained on Marco Island and used for health needs. 100% of those funds are being applied to cover part of the costs of constructing and equipping the proposed state of the Urgent Care Center. The ALF to be built on the parcel being sold is also health-related, fulfilling the care needs of our older residents, a fact that was recognized over 27 years ago when the deed restrictions were amended by MICA to allow an ALF use on this property.