Virginia Beach City Council to hear veterans care center presentation

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WVEC) — City council members will hear more about a proposed veterans care center Tuesday.

The 141,000-square-foot building is one of two new facilities that the Virginia Department of Veterans Services plans to build in the commonwealth. The other facility will be in Northern Virginia. Similar care centers already are open in Richmond and Fauquier County.

The Hampton Roads Veterans Care Center will feature 120 beds in private rooms and will sit on 26 acres located in the Princess Anne Commons Biomedical Corridor. The property is across West Neck Road from the municipal center.

The care center will have to ability to provide residents with a “home-like” atmosphere, skilled nursing care, Alzheimer’s/memory care, and short-term rehabilitation.

It will be divided into twelve 10-bed “homes” and employ approximately 150 people.

Frank Drew, who is a Vietnam veteran, told 13News Now it doesn’t bother him that the facility will be built right by his house. He’s just happy veterans are getting more help.

“Don’t care about the traffic. Don’t care about the noise. I don’t care that it’s on my property line. Let them build it. They can build it all the way down and all the way across. I’d love to see it,” he said.

He also hopes it will help alleviate long wait times at the Hampton VA Medical Center.

“To get a doctor’s appointment, it sometimes took 3 to 6 months. I just heard some nightmares– sitting over there waiting for care for people that are in far, far worse shape than I was ever in,” he said.

In a statement the Hampton VA said the following about the care center:

“For several years Hampton Roads has experienced one of fastest growing veteran populations in the nation. It is exciting to see the expansion of Veteran services in the Hampton Roads area. The approval of the State Veteran Care Center is a major step in assuring that long-term care and special needs of our Veterans are met in years to come.”

City council will vote on March 7 whether to transfer the 26 acres of land from Virginia Beach to the Commonwealth of Virginia.

A public information session will be held on March 13 at Kellam High School from 5:30 p.m to 7:30 p.m.

If things stay on track, a groundbreaking is planned for October with an opening to come in late 2019 after an extension to Nimmo Parkway is complete.