Menno Haven Rehabilitation Center Awarded WELL Certified GOLD by IWBI

August 30, 2019
Architecture Interior Design Senior Living Senior Living Interiors

The new 44-bed post-acute care skilled nursing rehabilitation center, designed by RDG, has become the world's first WELL-certified skilled nursing building.

The Menno Haven Rehabilitation Center has officially achieved Gold Level WELL Certification by The International WELL Building Institute. This prestigious certification is awarded to projects that advance human health and well-being and involves the third-party verification of rigorous performance standards for design interventions, operational protocols and company-wide practices.

The WELL Building Standard is a performance-based system combining best practices in design and construction with evidence-based scientific research including measuring, certifying and monitoring features of the building that impact human health and wellbeing. It took seven years of rigorous research and development working with leading physicians, scientists and industry professionals for this standard to become established. The rehabilitation center earned its first-in-the-world distinction based on seven categories of building performance — Air, Water, Light, Nourishment, Fitness, Comfort and Mind — to achieve a Gold Level rating.

“I’m proud that our project is the first skilled nursing project worldwide to receive this certification,” said Menno Haven CEO Hugh Davis. “From the moment people enter the front door, they will see this place is different — we incorporated research-based elements intended to promote the physical, emotional and spiritual health of guests and team members to achieve the WELL Certification. This building has allowed us to better serve individuals who need short-term care, whether that be someone recovering from surgery, an illness or an accident, they will recover here and then return home.” 

Several years ago, Menno Haven set out to reposition the existing 50-year-old community to meet the demands of coming generations and collaborated with RDG Planning & Design on a master plan. The Rehabilitation Center is part of Menno Haven’s five-year strategic plan known as Project Genesis, which will replace the original 1964 nursing home, and add a resident life center, memory care houses and new independent living cottages. The rehabilitation center is the first building within Project Genesis to be completed; all other portions of Project Genesis are currently under construction.

“The rehabilitation center is leading the way for the future of senior living across the country through a re-thinking of long-term care and short-term rehabilitation. Focusing on a healthy lifestyle is a shift in the way we have traditionally approached senior living, providing opportunities for seniors to maintain a higher quality of life while living longer,” said RDG Architect and Principal Scott Pfeifer, AIA, NCARB. “Through this WELL certification, Menno Haven is raising the wellness consciousness of the community and industry.”

RDG designed the Menno Haven Rehabilitation Center in collaboration with Cornerstone Senior Living, LLC, Dennis E. Black Engineering, ELA Group, Morrisey Engineering, SCOPOS Hospitality Group, Thompson, Dreessen, and Dorner, Inc., and Warfel Construction.


About Menno Haven

Menno Haven is a non-profit Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC) provider with over 50 years of care and service. Based in historic Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, Menno Haven operates two fully integrated communities featuring a wide range of independent living options. Governed by a volunteer Board of Directors and a commitment to Christian Principles, Menno Haven is passionate about serving each individual resident’s needs.

About the WELL Building Standard

WELL is grounded in a body of evidence-based research that explores the connection between the buildings where we spend approximately 90 percent of our time, and the health and wellness impact on those using the buildings. To be awarded WELL Certification by IWBI, Menno Haven underwent rigorous testing and a final evaluation carried out by Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI), which is the third-party certification body for WELL, to ensure it met all WELL Certified GOLD performance requirements.

Written by Erin Van Zee, Communications Director