Plans for investment in Coleraine apartment complex aimed at over-60s keen to downsize
A Co Londonderry-based company is planning to invest £3m in a new apartment complex exclusively for over-60s seeking to downsize.
The Turland Group said it was looking into demand for the scheme of 26 apartments.
It said the plans would bring 30 jobs for skilled labourers over 18 months and two part-time management jobs in the long term.
Crannagh Gate would be located on the Portstewart Road in Coleraine, one mile from the town centre.
The scheme would include a householder lounge featuring a mini cinema room, library, games room and a display kitchen, while a multi-purpose room would feature a hairdresser and yoga and Pilates classes.
A spokesman for the Turland Group said similar schemes had proved popular in England.
But he stressed Crannagh Gate should not be regarded as a retirement home.
He said: "This is a new concept in Northern Ireland and we want it to be somewhere that people approaching retirement move into and are proud to invite their family and friends to visit.
"There are too many people in large houses who are either not fit to or don't have the will to keep up maintenance. This is a lifestyle choice to get out of the big house and buy something that is value for money and where they can enjoy living."
While no prices for the apartments have been set yet, they are expected to range between £125,000 and £195,000.
A recent Ulster University house price survey found the average price for an apartment in the Causeway Coast and Glens area was £185,160.
The spokesman said the site would be a "strategic" location with plenty of bus stops nearby and close to both Coleraine and Portstewart. He said Turland Group was "delighted" with the site after four years of research.
He added: "There's no need for a car and residents can avail of the nearby beaches, the great facilities at Ulster University, which we will share a driveway with, and buses heading in both directions."
Other facilities include CCTV, parking, landscaped and maintained gardens, wifi in common areas, an on-site manager to take care of maintenance and a guest suite for friends and family to use. Pets would also be welcome.
Wellbeing is at the "core of the scheme", which Turland Group said had been designed to give people the opportunity to continue to live an active, independent lifestyle.
It will be "easy to manage and future-proofed" to adapt to the needs of homeowners, with assistance available if required.
Turland Group believes the scheme is "unique and much-needed" due to the "shortage of suitable housing", partly as a result of the increasing population of people aged over 65.
According to data from the Northern Ireland Statistics Research Agency, there are an estimated 25,525 people aged 65-plus living in the Causeway Coast and Glens council area, with forecasts suggesting this will increase by a further 7,000 people (28%) by 2026.
The Turland spokesman said: "By people choosing to downsize to schemes like Crannagh Gate in Coleraine, they are freeing up housing stock more suitable for young families with kids."