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Rochester, MN Launches Destination Medical Center Initiative

Six billion dollar proposal will help ensure that Mayo Clinic remains a global destination for health care

By Kevin Litwin on January 12, 2016

A rendering shows what downtown Rochester could look like in the future.
Courtesy of Destination Medical Center

A $6 billion Destination Medical Center proposal has kicked off in Rochester to help ensure that Mayo Clinic remains a global destination for health care.

The proposal was launched in August 2013 with an eight-member Destination Medical Center Corporation board appointed by the governor to help oversee investments that will include $3.5 billion from Mayo Clinic, $2 billion in proposed private development, and about $585 million in taxpayer money from the state, county and city. The money, to be spent over more than a decade, will go toward making infrastructure improvements throughout downtown Rochester so that millions more visitors will hopefully choose Mayo Clinic for their medical needs.

Mayo Clinic is currently Minnesota’s largest private employer, providing jobs for more than 40,600 Minnesotans, including 33,400 in Rochester. But other U.S. cities and foreign countries have encouraged Mayo Clinic to consider expansion outside of Minnesota. The medical giant provides a $9.8 billion economic impact and accounts for 4 percent of Minnesota's gross domestic product, which is why local officials are scurrying to keep and expand Mayo Clinic within the state.

Officials hope the DMC project begins development in late 2014, with initial improvements made to downtown Rochester streets, sidewalks, skyways, sewer lines, water lines, buses, parking facilities and other infrastructure. The goal is for downtown upgrades to ultimately lead to 30,000 additional permanent employees who would serve millions of added visitors frequenting Mayo Clinic and its ever-expanding facilities.

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