“Torrence Place” planned for 2320 Thornton Lansing Road
By Josh Bootsma
LANSING, Ill. (June 28, 2021) – A new healthcare and residential facility is taking steps to come to Thornton Lansing Road near Torrence Avenue, and replace a large building that has remained vacant in recent years.
Full Circle Communities and Christian Community Health Center came before the Lansing Planning and Zoning Board in early June to lay out their plans for a 17,000 square-foot “Torrence Place” facility that will be located at 2320 Thornton Lansing Road. Part of the facility will serve as a doctor’s office and health clinic operated by Christian Community Health Center. The larger part of the building is planned to host veterans and individuals with disabilities in 48 housing units, and will be run by Full Circle Communities.
Torrence Place is the most recent collaboration of Christian Community Health Center and Full Circle Communities, and both groups hope the new facility will address two needs in the South Suburbs: affordable healthcare and affordable housing.
“We felt it would be a great opportunity to partner again [with Full Circle Communities] in doing affordable housing, and this time also co-locate a clinic within the 48 units,” said Kenneth Burnett, CEO of Christian Community Health Center (CCHC).
The health clinic would be CCHC’s fourth, joining the organization’s other clinics in Chicago, Calumet City, and South Holland. The new location would provide similar services to the other locations, including primary care, children’s health, women’s health, dental care, and behavioral health. Burnett explained that doctors will be rotating in and out of the clinic based on the needs of the community. A pharmacy is also planned for the location.
Besides the 3,500 square feet set aside on the first floor for the health center, the remainder of the planned structure will act as a housing facility, with 40 one-bedroom units and eight two-bedroom units.
The units will range from roughly $500 to $1200 per month, depending on the amount of bedrooms and amenities.
In addition to the rooms, the facility will include a community room, patio, fitness room, storage units, on-site laundry, and computer lab.
Prioritizing housing for veterans and people with disabilities
James Dow is a project manager at Full Circle Communities, and explained to the Planning and Zoning Board why the proposed facility will prioritize veterans and people with disabilities in its residences.
“People with disabilities are always in need of safe, affordable, accessible housing. And the reality is a lot of the older apartment buildings across the City of Chicago don’t offer the accessibility features that these people really need to live comfortably,” said James Dow, Project Manager at Full Circle Communities.
Dow said there’s an estimated 1,800 people under age 65 in Lansing that have disabilities.
Dow also mentioned Lansing’s efforts to support its veterans, with the presence of an active American Legion in town as well as the current Hometown Heroes Banner Program. “It’s clear that this community rallies around serving this [veteran] population, and we know that there continues to be a growing national need for supportive housing for our nation’s veterans, and we feel Torrence Place in the Village of Lansing can be part of that solution,” he said.
Dow said Torrence Place would be Full Circle Communities’ fifth housing project that prioritized veterans.
Zoning, land, and current structure
Full Circle Communities and Christian Community Health Center came before the Lansing Planning and Zoning Board on June 9 to request a special use permit and minor variances to some of the existing zoning rules.
The new structure will take the place of the current building located at 2320 Thornton Lansing Road, which was used by Christian Community Health until a few years ago. Burnett said the structure served as a sort of corporate office for the organization for some years, before some of the health centers were remodeled and an effort was made to keep the corporate and day-to-day operations in the same building. Burnett said members of CCHC’s housing team were stationed there for a time, but serving all of Chicagoland made it difficult given Lansing’s southern location.
The new proposed facility would be placed on the Lansing tax rolls once completed.
If the Village Board were to approve the special use, the Village would also receive the plot of land immediately to the east of the project, which could be used for retail development. The high-visibility corner is across Torrence from a future Starbucks.
The Planning and Zoning Board voted unanimously to approve the special use and variances. The request will come before the Village Board Committee of the Whole on July 20.
Completion and interest list
Dow said the project would ideally start in September of this year, with completion in the fall of 2022. He said his organization hopes the facility might reach full occupancy by December of next year.
Local residents interested in applying to live in the facility can input their information on an interest list on Full Circle’s website or by calling 312-530-9600.