Planning and Design

2016 Market Study

TTMADRS hired Buckley Consulting to analyze demand for a new senior living community with a continuum of care in an 11-zip code area centered around Durham and Chapel Hill. The area included much of Durham County, the southern part of Orange County, some of the northern part of Chatham County and a tiny bit of western Wake County.

The results showed an unusually strong and growing demand for new independent living units, where there are very high occupancy rates and years-long waiting lists in the existing CCRCs in our area. There is more modest demand for additional assisted living units and a projected surplus of skilled nursing beds. Thus there is a clear need for more senior housing in our area. The demand is strong over the entire area, but the gap between existing plus proposed capacity and projected demand is especially great in Durham County east of the city center.

These very positive market study results are what we need to proceed to the next step: developing a programmatic and business plan for the type of community we want to create, and finding the financing to move forward.

Our research included consulting with many knowledgeable people and organizations specializing in aging and community. This led to identifying a company we can trust: Action Pact. We have engaged them to guide us through the process of creating a model community that guarantees autonomy, community, and care during the fragile stages of life while at the same time providing a vibrant and open arts village for all.

IPA Planning Sessions


Our first round of IPA meetings were held January 30 and 31, 2018. Fifty-five of our seventy-four Founders were able to attend. We'll meet for the second round late in February.

Steve Shields (Action Pact) reviewed the integrated pre-feasibility analysis (IPA) process. The process will produce a detailed plan of the project including pro forma, budget, renderings, financial benchmarks, and a schedule.

Action Pact led us through complex discussions of various business model possibilities (for-profit, not-for-profit, self-owned land company, separate operating company, etc.) with the goal of helping us determine the best way to secure the funds we need to move forward.

We looked at photos and floor plans of Household Model residences that AP had done, with AP asking what we liked/didn’t like as we looked at them. They asked us to individually put together collages of photos (from magazines and websites) of interior and exterior design features that appeal to us, and to bring these to the next IPA session.

AP took several straw polls: Who would be ready to move in in 3 years? Who preferred and/or was willing to live in urban, suburban, or rural environment? Who wanted 3-bedroom/2-bedroom/1-bedroom/studio residences.

Based upon these discussions AP will come to the 2nd set of meetings in February with estimates to help answer questions of how many living units on how much land on what schedule will be required to fund “common amenities” including Household Model units and a community/dance facility. Possible phasing of types of living units (independent living, assisted, and skilled nursing care) will be addressed.

The IPA Team

The Integrative Prefeasibility Analysis team consists of:

  • TTMADRS Board of Directors and Founders
  • About 60 of our 75 founders
  • Action Pact staff:
    • Steve Shields
    • Martin Dickmann
    • Chris Cole

The IPA team met for a total of six full days in the first quarter of 2018. In June, 2018, Action Pact returns to meet with us to present a business plan.

    The Household Model and ActionPact

    Our plans include a vibrant, musical environment where all of us can continue to enjoy the activities we love for as long as possible. We are also thoughtfully planning for the period of life when we slow down so much we need a lot of assistance. If you've ever been dismayed by the institutional, impersonal feel of many 'nursing homes' you may think that a retirement community is a sad and depressing place. The "Household Model" is a relatively new approach that we plan to implement. This comes from the website of Action Pact, the development group we've contracted with to guide the design process. That process began in January, 2018!

    "Each household has decision-making autonomy and is consistently staffed. Residents get up when they want, bathe how and when they want, go to bed when they want, eat when and what they want and decide how they will spend their day. Household life is “normal,” spontaneous and full of new experiences. Quality of Care and Quality of Life are of the highest and benefit from a symbiotic relationship."

    Learn more at


    Progress Update

    Our consultants from Action Pact joined a large group of Founders for our second round of planning meetings on February 27th and 28th. They gathered a lot of information from us, using small learning circles, polls, and large group discussion. It’s challenging to winnow out what people wish for versus what they absolutely need. It’s also interesting to ponder what one wants versus what one is willing and able to pay for. We never thought it would be easy or simple; now we are seeing in detail how complicated and multi-faceted this exciting process is.

    The Board is reviewing all the data collected and putting it in some order to mesh with the analyses our consultants are doing back in their offices. We’ve begun a spreadsheet of all the parcels we know about. When we are clearer about how much land we need and can afford, we’ll engage an expert site locator.

    One thing we know we need is more people! Our costs are lower when spread out over a large group, so we will soon be doing more marketing and outreach. Part of that includes changing our name to reflect our openness to anyone who would like to live with lovers of music, dance, and the arts, whether or not they actively engage in those activities. We are close to coming up with a nominee.

    Soon we’ll begin another round of fundraising to replenish our bank account for the next steps of planning and implementing.

    We’ll keep you posted. In the meantime, please spread the word about us to friends and family, both in person and via social media. Feel free to share links to our website and Facebook page.. If you would like business cards and/or brochures, let us know by leaving a message here. Let’s keep the buzz going!

    We Continue to Move Forward!

    The third round of the IPA planning meetings, March 27 and 28, was packed with more information, lots of choices and decisions, and a preview of what comes next. Action Pact will return the afternoon and evening of June 26 to present the Business Plan to all our Founders. We are planning to add a presentation for all others who are interested in what we are doing. We’ll post and send details soon.

    Financial reality was one of the primary themes of this round. We explored the relative risks of different forms of financing this project. We dug into cost of building, maintaining, staffing. We enjoyed seeing and giving feedback on a possible design for a space that includes a dance/performance hall, eating and cooking area with smaller rooms for classes and other activities.

    Straw polls showed us that the Founders attending those two days are currently willing to donate and/or invest enough to get us started building.

    Are you wondering where we will build?

    People often ask us: “Do you have land yet? Where will it be?” The size and type of land will depend on so many factors that it is premature to choose a location. We don’t yet know how much land is needed or how much we can afford. For example, the more people who commit to signing up, the more land we can afford and the lower our individual costs will be.

    • We aren’t waiting for the completion of the business plan by Action Pact to move forward on these crucial steps:
    • The board continues to consider optional names for our community. (Thanks for all your suggestions!)
    • Form a second corporation, suitable for accepting investments and developing the project.
    • Spread the word about what we are doing to attract more people. This may require hiring a marketing professional.
    • Find and hire an attorney to 1) draw up legal documents for those who want to invest in the land to get the project started and 2) to provide the non-binding letters of intent for those who plan to be the first to live there.
    • Raise more funds to pay for legal and marketing professionals. We have almost exhausted the funds donated for the business planning with Action Pact. We raised enough money to cover a number of expenses in addition to the IPA with Action Pact thanks to your generosity. Future expenses will be considerable for the legal and development aspect of the project.

    We'll keep you posted as we work to move us all forward toward our shared goals.

    Bree Kalb
    on behalf of the Board of TTMADRS

    We've Been Busy!

    We held a special meeting with our Founders May 15, 2018 as a follow up to the 3 IPA planning meetings. It was an opportunity for everyone to raise questions arising from those meetings and to give us feedback on how they want us to proceed.

    We began the meeting with a report from our Treasurer, Doug Shier. Founders and Friends have been so generous, we actually have a small sum left over after paying for a market study, legal and accounting fees, and the many hours of work by our consultant, Action Pact. We have decided to set some in reserve and we anticipate greater costs on the horizon. It's almost time for more fundraising. Stay tuned for that!

    We are currently incorporated as a 501(3)c educational non-profit. In order to buy land, accept investments, and begin to build, we will re-incorporate as a separate entity. For now, we are calling that “New Co” until we decide on a better name.

    We asked Founders how they want decisions to be made as we move into this new phase. What role do they want the current (and future) board to play? How much input should Founders and Investors have into decision-making and should that input be based on the amount invested?

    We are still collating those responses. At first review, it seems that many people would like the board to have decision-making authority about most issues, with some exceptions, and that input from Founders/Investors should be somewhat proportional to financial investment. There were also suggestions that the process for selecting and retaining Board Members be more transparent.

    We are taking all of this input seriously and incorporating it into our planning.

    The Business Plan is Coming - Tuesday, June 26

    Our next big step is a very important meeting June 26 for all of our Founders and any others who have attended one of our Educational Workshops.

    At that meeting Action Pact ( will present the Business Plan: the culmination of the 3 IPA meetings and many years of planning.

    This detailed plan will provide a lot of information and guidance for all of us to digest. We are rolling up our sleeves for this next chapter.

    We'll keep you posted after we thoroughly analyze the plan and decide our next steps.


    Meet Action Pact

    Learn more about Action Pact and the individuals that will be involved in our project, including a TED Talk and information about other projects.


    It Came - 2T Receives final Integrated Business Plan

    In June 2018 the 2T founders were presented with the final Integrated Business Plan as prepared by Action Pact. Here’s a small sample: