ST. JOSEPH - After the news just last week that Country Manor is planning to bring a large senior living facility campus to St. Joseph, a second senior facility is being pitched to the city this week.

In a letter to City Administrator Judy Weyrens, owner Tom Opatz is proposing a 45-unit senior living apartment building called "Fortitude Senior Living of St. Joseph". 10 apartments would be dedicated to seniors that don't have financial means to pay privately.

"We believe seniors should be allowed to age in place regardless of their financial means. It's hard to ask a senior to pay privately and then down spend their assets and ask them to leave," Opatz says in the letter.

The three-story, 40,000 square foot building would be in Graceview Estates and would cost between $5.5 to $6.5 million. Construction could start in early July and would be finished within 10 months.

The apartment units would range in size from 400-1100 square feet and would include full kitchens, private baths. Residents would be able to select services like medication administration, help with bathing, assistance with transportation, 24 hour on-site nursing staff, assistance with grooming and daily activities like casino card games. Three meals a day and snacks would be offered, along with activities in the community of St. Joseph.

The St. Joseph city council will discuss an application for tax increment financing for the facility on Wednesday night. In the letter, Opatz is requesting the city and county consider a 25-year TIF district for the project.

"This will help keep low income individuals in our building through elderly waiver and group residential housing programs. It will allow our customers to age in place even when they run out of private pay funds, which is part of our mission," Opatz says in the letter.