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By ALAN J. ORTBALS
p11 CedarhurstThe Cedarhurst Living facility in Edwardsville, an engineering project of QTE.    Senior citizen residential facilities are a booming real estate and construction market and Quality Testing and Engineering, Inc., headquartered in O’Fallon, Ill., has been working on a lot of them around metro St. Louis. Cedarhurst Living, based in Clayton, Mo., is one of QTE’s best clients, according to Joe Carter, QTE’s director of business development.
    “We’ve worked on about all their projects,” Carter said, “doing work ranging from geotechnical investigation to construction materials testing to completion. We’re about to start the subsurface exploration for a new assisted living center in Freeburg.”
    Senior housing has been a hot sector of the commercial real estate market for several years, according to Real Capital Analytics, and not just nursing homes. There are four primary types of senior citizen residential facilities.
        - Senior apartments are age-restricted rental units that provide limited services besides basic housing.
        - Independent living facilities cater to still-active seniors who do not need assistance with daily living activities. In addition to housing, these communities typically offer residents meals, laundry services and social activities.
        - Assisted living facilities cater to residents who are no longer capable of performing all of the activities of daily living. These communities offer more health-related services, including intermittent nursing care and assistance with daily medication, bathing, dressing, etc.
        - Memory care facilities are niche facilities operated to meet the needs of individuals who have experienced significant memory loss, such as those suffering from Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia.
    Cedarhurst Living currently operates 11 senior residential facilities in three states and has more under construction. In Illinois, they operate memory care and assisted living centers in Collinsville, Jacksonville, Shiloh, Naperville-Woodridge, Sparta and Yorkville. They also operate two memory care facilities in Edwardsville with others to open later this summer in Centralia and this fall in Greenville. They are opening an assisted living/memory care facility this fall in Bethalto.
    In Missouri, Cedarhurst Living operates assisted living/memory care facilities in Lee’s Summit, Shoal Creek, Independence and St. Charles. They also have one in Prairie Village, Kan.
    QTE has a second office in Wentzville, Mo., and Carter says that the firm’s market area covers a 150- to 200-mile radius around St. Louis.