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The Town of Merrillville might soon be home to a $30 million to $40 million investment in the community. 

MERRILLVILLE  — A new $7 million skilled nursing facility is on the drawing board for the area of 93rd and Broadway.

Long Term Care Investments VI is pursuing the project on the more than 10 acres east of Broadway.

Planning Director Sheila Shine said the development includes five residential buildings. Each of the structures would have 12 beds, a dining area, beauty salon and spa. Of the units in the development, 12 of them would be dedicated to those with dementia.

Shine said a community center would be established to serve the entire campus, and the development would feature a central courtyard. The community center would have movies and other activities for the residents in the skilled nursing facility.

The Plan Commission granted preliminary planned unit development approval for the project. The commission could take final action on that in May. The request also requires support from the Town Council before it could advance.

Attorney Richard Anderson, who represents Long Term Care Investments, said state approval is needed for all of the units.

“We think we're going to get them, but nothing's for sure in the state of Indiana,” Anderson said.

Groundbreaking could take place in July If the facility receives approval from the town and state.

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This isn't the first time Long Term Care Investments pursued a skilled nursing project at the 93rd Avenue location.

In 2017, the town approved a two-lot subdivision associated with plans the company had to construct a single 100-bed facility there.

Changes in state law prohibited Long Term Care Investments from moving forward with that project.

Commission member Brian Dering said the state is seeking developments with a “small home concept” instead of one large institutional building.

The council in 2017 also approved a five-year tax abatement request for Long Term Care Investments.

The municipality pursued that incentive because the company will be required to install a new lift station for its sanitary sewer service, said Councilman Shawn Pettit, president of the Plan Commission.

Merrillville is unable to use tax increment financing district dollars to help pay for the lift station, but the abatement can help offset the costs of installing it.

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