Evolving with the goals and needs of our community
Moncton – and the world – was a very different place 30 years ago. A whole generation of people who had lived through countless challenges – the Depression, World War II, the migration from farming life to urban society, was coming to a new stage. They were at retiring age, but did not have the family structure that had once kept several generations together on the family farm. They enjoyed that freedom, but needed a support system to help them make the most of their later years.
Willard Dernier, the late general manager of Maritime Co-operative Service Ltd. (MCS), now known as Co-op Atlantic, saw this growing need for senior housing in the early 1970s. Moncton’s seniors needed a place to call home.
This awareness led Dernier to create Atlantic Peoples Housing Ltd (APHL) in 1973 as a wholly-owned subsidiary of MCS. Dernier wanted it to be a place where retired people could live, free of the responsibility of maintaining a home, but at a rent that was tied to the cost of operation – not simply whatever the market could bear.
Although Willard passed away in 1974, before the completion of peoples Park Tower, his dream continued on. The innovative team at APHL followed through on the plans and successfully completed the complex in early 1976. Lorne Preston became the first manager of Peoples Park Tower, establishing a spirit of caring and warmth that is unique to the buildings.
Today, the world has caught up with Willard’s insight. Senior services have expanded, and as the “Baby Boom” generation ages, the old stereotypes of the golden years are being continually challenged.
One of the most important things about the success of Peoples Park Tower is how it continues to grow and change with the needs of the community. A look at the activities residents have available to them – like Tai Chi classes – reflects the awareness that retirement doesn’t need to be a time to slow down. In fact, it can be the opportunity to act on your dreams.
Through innovations like the Camden Park Terrace's Active Living programs, (APHL) now known as Avide has remained at the forefront of senior residential services in Moncton and, indeed, the region.
Looking to the future, there is little doubt that retirement will continue its trend towards fulfilling, self-directed lifestyles. If there’s one thing you can count on, it’s that Camden Park Terrace will be on the forefront bringing exciting new ways of living to seniors in the Moncton area.
Camden Park Terrace Operations Manager