By Joy White
Magas Patriot Group LLC presented its proposal to develop the Oka Point property to the Mayors’ Council of Guam on Dec. 16 to garner support. The proposal includes a hotel, a shopping complex, a cultural center, a residential center, an educational center, an assisted living facility and a medical facility.
The 42-acre property has been vacant for 27 years and has no infrastructure. The property is under the Chamorro Land Trust Commission.
“The law states that if it is rented out, it should be rented out at a fair market value, which is about $1.2 million a year,” said Dr. Vincent Akimoto, speaking on behalf of Magas Patriot Group.
Edward J. Calvo, board chairman of the Guam Economic Development Authority, told the Journal the agency has a memorandum of understanding with the CLTC to handle its commercial leasing program. The program’s rules and regulations must be approved by the legislature before bids or proposals for commercial developments, including Oka Point, can be accepted and reviewed.
The CLTC developed rules and regulations, and Sen. Thomas C. Ada introduced the rules and regulations as a legislative bill on Aug. 28, but the document was disapproved by lawmakers. A revised version was introduced on Sept. 11 as Bill 175-33, and a public hearing was held on Sept. 21.
Commercial components of the proposed Oka Point development will be outsourced to industry experts, while the group has been working with the Guam Community College to relocate the college’s nursing program and hotel and restaurant administration program to the development’s educational center.
Medical tourism and the “silver hair” market will be a major target, with plans for construction of an assisted living center and medical complex for ancillary services on the property. The medical complex has the potential to help support the Guam Memorial Hospital, Akimoto said.
In addition to the assisted living center planned for Oka Point, work on an assisted living facility in Mangilao is expected to begin within the next 18 months. Private property totaling 12 acres behind the American Medical Center is reserved for the 103-unit facility, which will cater to elderly recovering from illness or medical procedures.
While the Mangilao facility is primarily built with Guam’s health needs in mind, the facility could also take advantage of medical tourism.
“From our conversations with Tokio Marine [Pacific Insurance Ltd.] and Dongbu [Insurance Co. Ltd.] … elderly care in Korea and Japan is already over expanded; they’re looking for spaces for their elderly to be,” Akimoto said.
The construction of both assisted living centers will, for the most part, be privately funded. However, some federal subsidies will be sought in order to ensure the affordability of health care, and the group is working with the U.S. Department of Agriculture to locate local funds to help build the infrastructure, as the Oka Point facility will be a rural health facility.
“The private sector is going to have to step up and there are investors who are looking at assisted living to help put money on Guam. There are both local investors as well as national and international investors who are seeing that in the [United] States and Japan and throughout Asia, elderly care is a big business,” Akimoto said.
Multiple assisted living centers will help keep the cost of care down, Akimoto said. The cost of staying in the assisted living centers is expected to be $3,200 to $4,000 per month out of pocket.
The Mangilao assisted living center will offer small units, built for clients to live in and maybe do some minor cooking, Akimoto said. A majority of the cost will go toward medical services, including rehabilitation, a 24-hour nursing team and security. “[Our] goal is to help them to recover, so the family can take them home. So there will be a lot of education going on,” Akimoto said.
The Mangilao assisted living center and proposed Oka Point complex will also provide opportunities for students from abroad, such as Japan and Korea, to receive U.S. credentials and increase their English proficiency.
About 75 to 100 employees will be hired at the Mangilao facility, including a team of rehabilitative specialists from Guam and Micronesia, while another 100 will be employed at the additional facility. MBJ
Magas Patriot Group LLC presented its proposal to develop the Oka Point property in Tamuning and to build assisted living centers to the Mayors’ Council of Guam on Dec. 16.
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