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Barclay Friends Celebrate Completion of Preston Building

Barclay Friends Celebrate Completion of Preston Building
August 5, 2020

Congratulations to Barclay Friends on the completion of the Preston building! Bernardon provided architectural, interior design, and landscape architecture services to Barclay Friends for Preston which includes residential living, personal care and memory care accommodations, and modern amenities.

WEST CHESTER—It was a time to celebrate and a time to remember. The Barclay Friends held a virtual ribbon cutting to mark the completion of Preston at Barclay Friends.

The building rose from the ashes of a devastating Nov. 16, 2017 fire that killed four.

“Good evening and welcome to the ribbon cutting for Barclay Friends’ newest building, Preston,” Executive Director Linda Sterthous said in kicking off the July 30 online celebration of the completion of construction of the 61,000-square-foot building. “We have over 170 people with us on Zoom tonight.

“We would have loved to see each of you in person, but we thought it best to keep everyone safe by bringing Preston to you virtually, to your homes and offices.”

Preston features 60 apartments, including 20 for residents in need of secure memory care. When it opens later this summer, the building also will provide accommodations for personal care and residential living.

The look and feel of Preston will be intimate, with small memory care “neighborhoods,” or clusters of rooms, to help residents feel at-home, reads a Barclay release.

The layout of the new building will afford residents opportunities to enjoy natural light, as well as open spaces. Residents will have easy access to Barclay Friends’ gardens, where they can spend time outside and plant flowers and vegetables.

“Families will enjoy visiting, knowing that the gardens provide safe, tranquil places to gather with loved ones outdoors in the fresh air,” reads the release.

Preston will feature new, modern amenities. Dedicated spaces, including an art room, library, fitness room and hair salon will enrich resident’s lives. Residents will also have opportunities for rehabilitative therapies through Barclay Friends’ award-winning program.

Preston has been constructed with steel and concrete, and the exterior features brick, stone and siding known for its attractiveness, as well as durability and flame-retardant properties.

“The Preston building is an incredible example of (what) can be done when we put our minds to it, when we put our hearts to it and when we get after it together,” said Kendal President and CEO Sean Kelly. “Thank you so much for letting us all, through Kendal, be a part of your journey and feel the energy with you as you’ve taken on this incredible challenge and seen it through.”

The building was named in honor of Dr. Ann Preston, a 19-century Quaker activist and physician who was one of the first women in America to become a medical doctor. Sterthous noted that Dr. Preston was “an abolitionist whose home was on the underground railroad and a champion for voting rights for women.”

Preston served as Dean of the Women’s Medical College of Pennsylvania and founded a nursing school there. The Barclay chose to name the building after Preston because it was felt that Dr. Preston’s life and legacy represented much of what Barclay Friends stands for, reads the release.

“For 127 years, Barclay Friends has been serving the needs of older adults in West Chester and the surrounding area,” Board Chair John Braceland said. “Our mission is to continuously improve care of those aging across the continuum of services we provide. Our new facility is just one way we are serving these needs.”

Sterthous and Braceland shared the ribbon-cutting honors at Preston’s main entrance with Diane Williams, a Barclay Friends employee for 28 years who will serve as Preston’s Personal Care Administrator.

The ribbon cutting celebration concluded with a virtual tour of several interior and exterior areas of Preston by Faith Woodward, Barclay Friends Director of Admissions and Marketing.

Written by Bill Rettew; Originally published in The Daily Local.

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