The Projects


The information below is from the April 2, 2012 project narrative.  This project awaits state matching funds for construction.  See the Year 2020 Approved Project List and note the Soldiers' Home in Holyoke is No. 50 awaiting state funding. 

In addition, the federal U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is awaiting state funding for an Adult Day Health Care project that would transform an outdoor area at the Soldiers' Home in Holyoke into a beautiful indoor and outdoor environment for Veterans.  Link here to slides that explain the program.


In 2010, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs cited the Soldiers’ Home in Holyoke as being non-compliant to Uniform Federal Accessibility Standards (UFAS). 


In response, the Massachusetts Division of Capital Asset Management commissioned a Needs Assessment Study to evaluate the existing facility conditions and determine a capital program for updates to the Soldier's Home. This study determined that of the 278 current beds at the Soldiers’ Home in Holyoke, less than 5% met VA Standards.  The majority of rooms exceed the minimum of two beds per room, do not have direct access from bedroom to toilet room, or share a single bathroom between 6 residents.    


This Needs Assessment Study resulted in the project proposal.


Two early goals of this project were identified: 1) to maintain the long-term care bed capacity; and 2) to update the units from an old nursing home model to create spaces more aligned with the community living center model.  Resident rooms within the existing structures will be transformed into single and double bedrooms, each with private toilet rooms, all compliant to Uniform Federal Accessibility Standards.


This renovation project will significantly reduce the capacity from 278 beds to 138.  Renovation and consolidation of support program spaces on Level 1 of the Soldiers’ Home would create a new 12 bed resident unit increasing the capacity of the existing buildings at the Soldiers’ Home to 150.  In order to gain lost bed capacity, a portion of the existing North Building (which today houses mostly building support functions) will be demolished and replaced with a new 53,000 SF building addition housing 120 private rooms with private bathrooms.  Upon completion of the project, the total long-term care bed capacity will house 270 residents, in 12-15 bed units with integral living space typical of the Community Living Center model. 


Major administrative spaces will be consolidated on the 5th floor where a new second means of egress will be added, addressing another existing condition cited in the VA survey.   The HVAC system for the addition will be an all air system. The existing low pressure steam boiler plant has sufficient capacity for the new addition; steam will be converted to hot water to provide heat via a variable air volume system.  New air handling units and a new chiller plant will be required for the addition and will be located in a penthouse on the roof. 


Each resident room in the new addition will have its own VAV box to provide individual temperature control.   Resident rooms in the renovated structure will each have their own fan coil unit, providing individual temperature control and 100% outside air from new heat recovery roof top units. These renovated rooms will be heated with steam radiators controlled by DDC control valves and tied to the fan coil unit control system. A new standpipe and wet pipe sprinkler system with a new fire pump will be required for the addition.   A new 480Y/277 volt service switchboard and 225kVA transformers will be provided in addition to an emergency generator and fuel tank.  Modifications to the existing building will separate emergency panels from the normal distribution panels.  A stand-alone addressable fire alarm system will be provided for the addition.  


The project will require phasing in order to maintain continued use by current residents. Temporary relocation of the hospice unit and some renovation to the lower levels will be required prior to the demolition of the existing North Building and the construction of the addition.  Upon completion of the addition, subsequent renovations of each wing will be phased to maintain the bed capacity as much as possible throughout the construction phase of the project.