Ground broken for new senior living community

By BUSTER WOLFE,

Dirt was broken last week for one of the most unique additions to the Hattiesburg area that is designed for active seniors.

Darian Pierce, president of Pierce Realty, Inc., hosted a groundbreaking ceremony for The Colony at Turtle Creek Crossing at 5173 W. Fourth St. The Colony is a gated community of 25 star-shaped structures called Carriage Houses.

One featured amenity of the site is Conway’s Family Pub with outdoor sitting in the Sheepfold, live Irish folk music and a three-barrel craft brewhouse with a full-time brewmaster. The Pub, which will be housed in the structure now standing on the site, is named after St. Fabian Catholic Church’s Father Tommy Conway.

Conway joked about having the pub named after him during the opening ceremony.

“They wouldn’t name the church after me; they called it St. Fabian’s,” he said. “So the next best thing is to have a pub.”

Pierce said the property was originally a nursery. The owner said the insurance company told him that everything was covered inside the building.

“There were several acres of greenhouses and plants – several thousand dollars in inventory – that was not covered,” he said. “He came to me and said, ‘I could get a loan and try to recover from this (after Katrina). It’s going to take me 10-15 years to get back today. I really want to simplify my life. Do you think you think you can do something with this?’ I said, ‘Yes, I can. I’ll write a contract and we’ll sew it up.’”

Pierce said he initially thought about apartments through an Atlanta contractor, whose contract later failed. So Pierce decided to develop The Colony.

Pierce said his faith led him to this point.

“It’s about the things Christ does for us, makes all things new,” he said. “Among all of us, we’re all redeemable.”

Conway’s Family Pub will have a full menu of choices for every meal, any time of the day.

Or the restaurant can deliver meals to the Discovery Room.

If a resident doesn’t feel like socializing, they can have it delivered to their private apartment.

Suddenly, they no longer had a senior living facility where meals are set at the same time, with no choices. Residents are adults with liberties and independence to eat when, where and with whom they choose.

Amenities at The Colony include exercise, walking paths, gardening, yoga and proximity to the Longleaf Trace. Each Carriage House one contains five private residential units. The residential units have two bedrooms, a private bath, kitchen, dining area, living room and a covered porch with a fenced backyard.