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Aged care giant reveals plans for first Canberra facilities in two locations

An 120-bed aged care facility is planned for the 7216-metre-square site at Aranda. Picture: Supplied

Aged care giant the Knowles Group has unveiled plans for its first two aged care facilities in Canberra, building on a portfolio of 49 residences across the country.

The group, which owns residential aged care business Arcare, has released plans for an 120-bed Aranda facility as well as a 98-bed Wright development for public consultation ahead of lodging its development applications.

Knowles Group has also had discussions with Murrumbidgee Country Club about developing an aged care facility on its land.

"Knowles is very pleased to have the opportunity to bring our quality aged care offering to the ACT, so people have the opportunity to stay in their local area," the company's property chief executive Mike Carnell said in a statement.

"We are aware from research that there is a shortage of retirement and aged care options for our seniors in the ACT," Mr Carnell said.

"Meaning it is either unavailable within an acceptable timeframe or requires people to move a substantial distance away from community and family support networks."

The family-run developer is the largest private aged care provider in the country, with more than 4500 beds across three states.

It maintains ownership and control of its residences and retirement villages, "continually investing in them to ensure their success over the long term", Mr Carnell said.

The Aranda facility at 1 Bindel Street would be built on a 7216-square-metre site, which formerly housed a nursing home and is zoned for the purpose.

Plans for the ground floor include 56 rooms, with the remaining 64 located on the first floor.

The Wright site was purchased from the Suburban Land Agency in 2021. Picture: Supplied

Rooms would range from 25.9 to 34.1 square metres in size, incorporating an ensuite, while a basement car park would house 61 parking spaces.

The building would also feature an internal courtyard, as well as communal facilities for resident use, including dining and activity spaces as well as a hairdresser, physio and library.

The 5141-square-metre site at Harriott Street/Alex Colley Crescent in Wright was purchased in 2021 from the Suburban Land Agency to support future aged care needs in the Molonglo Valley.

Floor plans for the facility show 45 rooms on the ground floor, which is also outfitted with an internal courtyard and community facilities, while the first floor hosts 53 rooms.

The plans show rooms ranging from 23.2 to 33.2 square metres with some larger suites, as well as basement parking with 49 spaces.

Knowles' move into the ACT highlights the demand for aged care and retirement living facilities.

The territory government has also encouraged community clubs, which often occupy large parcels of land, to invest in developing aged care and retirement living facilities as a means of diversifying their revenue streams.

Mr Carnell presented plans for the Aranda development to the Belconnen Community Council on Tuesday night and will present the Wright plans to Molonglo Community Forum on July 28.

Further public consultation sessions for both locations will take place over the next few weeks, more information on the Aranda location is available here, while details for Wright can be accessed here.

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