Plans to move the Kahl Home from Davenport's central city to a larger suburban campus on the city's north side cleared a major hurdle Wednesday.
With no discussion, Davenport aldermen voted unanimously in favor of rezoning 34 acres of residential land at the intersection of Jersey Ridge Road and Veterans Memorial Parkway as a planned development district. The Carmelite Sisters for the Aged and Infirm, which has run the Kahl Home at 9th Street since its inception in the 1950s, plan on constructing a full-service continuing care retirement community with skilled nursing, assisted living and independent living apartments on the site.
The current landlocked site, which still includes the original Kahl Mansion and a 135-bed residential building built in 1963, is too small to allow the sisters to offer the wide range of retirement and nursing care seniors now need, they said.
The 34 rezoned acres are part of a total 71-acre parcel the organization has contracted to purchase. The Kahl Home board of directors has not announced a timeline for a move or set a target for groundbreaking, because the deal has not been finalized.
Last week, Rosalie Thomas, the home's administrator, said the board will work with city leaders to try and market the property and find a developer seeking an infill development.
Parks and Recreation Director Seve Ghose updated aldermen on progress made toward adopting parts of the Fejervary Park Children's Learning Center's five-year plan.
Amenities the city hopes to have in place soon include a nine-hole miniature golf course with an environmental theme and a large area for the Juan Diez Rancheros Rescue Horse organization to offer both therapy for the disabled and petting and horse rides for park visitors. The plan also includes a sensory garden, natural playground, a kaleidoscope walk-around and a workshop in the old mountain lion area, as well as a grove with all 50 state trees from and a Fejervary living history wall mural that graphically illustrates the park's past.
Alderman Ray Ambrose, 4th Ward, whose ward houses the park, said the improvements are moving along well and should help boost attendance and interest at the hilltop park.