Silvercrest’s New Life

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Silvercrest’s New Life

George Dwight

I like to connect dots—to know how to get to everything. When I first moved to New Albany, into an apartment complex behind Floyd Memorial Hospital off of State Street, I would see a building off in the distance every day I pulled out onto Bono Road. The building is brick and appears to sit atop a hill, often amidst fog, west of New Albany. The place never has any lights on, and, quite frankly, looks old and spooky.

I described this mysterious brick building, and from where I could see it, to several New Albany-natives—heads shook. I even ventured into the hills one Sunday afternoon, with a friend, to find this building—couldn’t find the building. To be honest, driving on steep slopes scares me and turns me off as much as sticky floors do.

I decided to use the internet for something other than Louisville.com, Wikipedia, or YouTube. I typed in several different combinations of New Albany keywords and found this building in the hills that caught my attention to be the old Silvercrest Sanatorium. I mentioned this name to the New Albany-natives I originally asked in regards to the mysterious building, and every single one of them knew exactly what building I was talking about and its location.

This building officially came back to life Thursday, July 18. The historic six-story building, whose address is 1809 Old Vincennes Road—I made a U-turn in the 1700 block on my steep-slope-filled venture—has been undergoing renovations over the last few years. The site has been transformed into a new senior-living community.

Silvercrest was used as the 150-bed Southern Indiana Tuberculosis Hospital from 1940 to 1972. The site then became the Silvercrest Children’s Development Center, a mental health facility and school, from 1974 to 2006. Indiana closed the facility and real estate developer Matt Chalfant purchased the land. Louisville-based Trilogy Health Services LLC partnered with Matt Chalfant with plans to convert the site into a senior-living community with assisted-living, independent-living, and skill-nursing as options for its residents. The former hospital and mental health facility and school include roughly $16 million in renovations with about $4 million in new patio homes.

Due to the rain this year, the trees have grown extra thick, so I can’t see if the new senior-living community has had any sort of facelift to lose some of its spookiness.  Next adventure for me is this Waverly Hills I keep hearing about. I drove toward that part of Louisville one day, was turned off by curvy streets, and headed back toward the river.