See inside nonprofit’s $5.8 million expansion of historic Covington home

By Tom Demeropolis – Senior Staff Reporter
Aug 26, 2021 Updated Aug 26, 2021, 12:05pm EDT

A longtime nonprofit organization in Covington has wrapped up construction on a nearly $5.8 million expansion.

The Victorian at Riverside has completed construction of an expansion of its facility at 702 Garrard St. in historic Covington. The expansion more than doubled the size of the Victorian at Riverside.

Carrie VanDerzee, chief executive officer of the Victorian at Riverside, said every decision for the expansion was made with residents in mind. For example, the landscaping that is being planted is placed 10 feet in front of the windows so the residents will be able to enjoy them from their rooms.

“We are thoughtful and intentional about everything we do here,” VanDerzee told me.

To get a look at the new Victorian at Riverside, click on the images above.

The 21,000-square-foot wing, which is connected to the existing historical facility, increases Victorian at Riverside’s capacity to 40 residents from 24. All residents will live in the new portion of the building, which provides each resident with her own room and bathroom.

The expansion also created an enclosed outdoor courtyard, expanded dining room and additional gathering rooms for activities and programming.

One of the biggest changes has been the entrance to the facility. Instead of being at the front corner of the building at Garrard and East Seventh streets, the main entrance is now at the rear of the building, close to the facility’s parking lot.
The Victorian at Riverside will continue to provide care, chef-prepared meals and medication dispensing services throughout the community. Residents of the new wing also will have access to the Victorian parlor, beauty salon, chapel and other offices in the current structure.

A couple of rooms will be used as respite rooms for those who need a short stay. Victorian at Riverside has 24/7 care, with a total of 26 employees.

The monthly rate for residents is $3,150, which includes a private room, three meals a day, basic laundry, housekeeping, activities, 24-hour nursing and delivering pharmacy.

Ashley Construction oversaw the construction of the expansion. Robert Ehmet Hayes & Associates was the architect for the project.

The expansion project was financed through a combination of capital campaign funds, endowment and PACE Ohio/Energize Kentucky funding. VanDerzee said at least 75 people donated to help cover the cost of the expansion.
Victorian at Riverside had operated out of the historical building at 702 Garrard St. since 1894.

The old portion of Victorian at Riverside will continue to house the salon, offices and boardroom. VanDerzee said now that the expansion has been completed, she’s turning her attention to how to best use the space on the second and third floors of the historical building.

Planning for this second phase is just beginning now. A grand opening for the new Victorian at Riverside is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. on Sept. 30.