Peaceful Paths expansion to be complete by March 2015

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Peaceful Paths held a groundbreaking last week for an expansion of its facilities off of Northwest 53rd Avenue, now officially named the Dutton-Schilling Shelter.

The new facility will be comprised of five buildings, including three duplex apartments, a donation center and a laundry, totaling 19,500 square feet. It will also feature a pet room, because Peaceful Paths Executive Director Theresa Beachy said that one of the things they found is that women are less likely to leave an abusive situation if they have to leave their pets behind.

On hand for the groundbreaking and name reveal were Peaceful Paths partners, Sheriff Sadie Darnell, Police Chief Tony Jones, City Commissioner Lauren Poe and $1 million donors Drs. Paul Schilling and Jay Dutton. Schilling and Dutton’s donation was matched and exceeded by $3 million in public grant funds from the Department of Children and Families in July 2013.

Schilling said that they were hoping that a collaboration of public and private funds would happen, and he felt the state was impressed because Peaceful Paths already had a good start on the process with available land and a plan for the facility. The old facility requires a huge amount of money to maintain, he said, and exists as a place to live, but not to heal.

“This has been a great journey,” Dutton said. “We’re delighted that the groundbreaking coincides with Peaceful Paths 40th anniversary. The old facility is costly to maintain, is too small and isn’t really accessible to public transit. This new building is only a part of Peaceful Path’s future, and we’re very grateful to live in community that cares.”

The new facility was designed by architect Ricardo Cavallino and will be built by BBI Construction Management. Peaceful Paths and BBI are in the final stages of permitting, according to BBI CEO Joe Burns, and the construction process will begin before May with a projected completion date of March 2015.

“We’re creating an environment of healing,” said Executive Director Beachy. “It really will symbolize the love of this community to our clients.”

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