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“Not all companies out there are able to deliver a product from beginning to end and really manage all phases of the project, and I think that’s a huge plus as it relates to working with ERDMAN.”

“For me it’s really the people [at ERDMAN]. I think you can work with organizations and have good alignment, but at the end of the day it’s the people who bring . . . the experience that truly is exceptional.”


— Michael Mutterer, Senior VP & CNO


Riverside Senior Life Communities identified the need for assisted living and memory care services in the Bourbonnais, Illinois area. Riverside wanted a state-of-the-art facility that provided a comprehensive continuum of care. But they also wanted to combine the feeling of a real home with an efficient operational model allowing exceptional care. Making Riverside’s vision real would mean creating a facility that achieved these goals:

  1. Become a regional draw for senior living and memory care services
  2. Provide above-market quality services with market rate pricing
  3. Establish an atmosphere that engages residents in meaningful daily activities
  4. Achieve high rates of satisfaction from both residents and staff
  5. Decrease the rate of resident falls and injuries
  6. Lessen staff travel and maximize staff visibility of resident spaces


To meet Riverside’s goals, the project approach blended an Evidence Based Design process with Green House principles, which focus on creating a homelike setting for seniors within a financially viable facility model. ERDMAN provided the following solutions for the new Riverside facility:

  1. Used mock-ups for resident rooms and other areas while collaborating with staff and end-users to validate size, scale, and amenity decisions
  2. Organized rooms into “neighborhoods” to establish a familiar, comfortable setting for residents
  3. Integrated Care Team Centers into each neighborhood that allowed staff unobstructed views while still maintaining a homelike setting for residents
  4. Incorporated small-scale community spaces to create an intimate and nurturing setting—complemented with vaulted ceilings and ample natural light
  5. Harmonized the facility with nature by integrating easily viewable and safely accessible gardens and courtyards
  6. Enhanced resident lifestyle with special features like café/bistro-style food service, group activity areas, and a physical therapy room
  7. Used contrasting colors, textures, and accessories to help residents recognize surroundings and more easily return to their private rooms

Built on the Riverside Health Bourbonnais Medical Campus, the new facility’s design has helped Riverside meet its census goals as well as achieve lower fall/injury rates, greater staff efficiency, and high satisfaction rates from residents, family, and staff.


  1. Location: Bourbonnais, IL
  2. 74,986 SF assisted living and memory care center
  3. Two 16-bed assisted-living neighborhoods
  4. Four 12-bed memory care neighborhoods
  5. Specialty spaces include café/bistro, kitchen/activity setting, and physical therapy area
  6. $15,000,000 design and construction budget
  7. Completed: August 2013


Michael Mutterer, CMO of Riverside Senior Life, describes what it was like to work with ERDMAN.



An Evidence-Based Design Approach

ERDMAN’s goal was to create an assisted living environment that offers an exceptional resident experience through a design that emulates a home-like environment and supports operational efficiencies to allow staff to better-manage and care for a resident population with diverse and increasing acuity levels, so they may age in place.