were quick to react. They assessed the need and support for a nursing
home project for the Italian community, incorporated the project under
the name “Villa Marconi” and submitted a 300-page application
to the Ontario Ministry of Health. By August of 1990 Villa Marconi
Inc. was awarded a licence for 60 nursing home beds.
where would the new organization put these beds? A site had to be
chosen, design and construction had to take place, and a financial
plan had to be established before the project could progress. The
initial work took five years to complete.
1995, the Convent of the Holy Cross – a simple building made
of yellow brick – was purchased for $3.45 million. The convent,
which had a chapel, large kitchen and large community hall, was built
in 1956 on eight acres of land. Facing the experimental farm, with
an apple orchard on its grounds, the building sitting at 1026 Baseline
was a peaceful and modest beginning for Villa Marconi.
March of 1995, Villa Marconi Inc. put a down payment of $250,000 on
the building. They started a major campaign to raise the $500,000
dollars needed to take possession of the building in September. The
group was successful; a ribbon-cutting ceremony took place on September
continued and the building, now called Villa Marconi, was used as
a social and recreation facility to help raise the money needed to
update it. While the large spaces of the building were in good condition,
renovations had to be made to meet provincial nursing home regulations.
Rooms and halls had to have specific dimensions and facilities for
cleaning and other functions had to be added.
1997, Villa Marconi got a visit from Ontario Premier Mike Harris and
an infusion of money from the province to the tune of $2.4 million.
Later, the region of Ottawa-Carleton gave $1 million towards the project.
money was in place, but there was still more to be done.
page 2. Building a Home