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Destination... Rochester, Minnesota?

Written by Charlie Hexum, Retail Leasing Specialist

Image of DMC's Heart of the City (Courtesy of DMC)

The city of Rochester, Minnesota has long been synonymous with the world renowned Mayo Clinic. Over the next 20 years the city will be synonymous with one word: GROWTH. This is due to Destination Medical Center or as it is more commonly referred to DMC.

What is DMC? According to its official website, DMC is a, “20 year economic development initiative to position Rochester, Minnesota as the world’s premier destination for health and wellness.”

Seems like a pretty tall order and the cost of it will not come cheap as the website further states, “with more than $5 billion in projected private investments over the next 20 years, DMC will provide the public financing necessary to build the public infrastructure and other projects needed to support the vision. DMC represents the largest economic development initiative in Minnesota and one of the largest in the United States.” Yes, you read that correctly $5 Billion... Billion... with a B!

With that being stated, instead of simply listing off numbers and projected stats that can be found by clicking HERE, I've decided to use this opportunity to provide one real example within the Rochester market of DMC’s power so far in just a short time period of less than two years. That example is Shoppes on Maine.

Shoppes on Maine is a retail power center that sits in the South Corridor of the city and is located between 40th Street & 48th Street along Highway 63. It was originally developed in 2006 - 2007 by the Opus Group along with Rochester-based Maine Street Development. Its anchors include Super Target, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Old Navy, PetSmart, Lowe’s and Wehrenberg Theaters with a strong mix of national small shop tenants in various buildings throughout the development. During the initial development, Mills Fleet Farm also re-located from their longstanding location to lay out their larger prototype further south off Highway 63. The store currently serves as an area anchor for the development sitting directly across 48th Street.

It is safe to say that the development has had its fair share of downs over the years. Best Buy, DEB, Mattress Firm, Cherry Berry and Pearle Vision all left the development. However, since 2013 there have been a lot more ups than downs occurring within Shoppes on Maine and the South Corridor it sits within. DMC, and the overall buzz it has created for the city, is a large reason why.  

The ‘Ups’ since 2013:

  • Three new multifamily complexes, a total of approximately 800 new housing units, have been announced. Two of these are currently under construction with the third soon to follow.
  • Mayo Clinic signed a 20 year ground lease for a brand new 24,000 square foot SW Family Clinic within the development. Its doors opened in January 2015.
  • A new Subaru dealership recently announced that its future home will be in the Corridor.
  • Weherenberg Theaters recently announced that an IMAX screen will be added to their current building.
  • Two new hotels, La Quinta Inn & Suites and Microtel Inn & Suites, were constructed to join the existing Comfort Inn & Suites.
  • In 2013, Mercedes Benz chose the development for their first ever dealership in the city.
  • Schneidermann’s Furniture backfilled the former Best Buy box.
  • AT&T recently backfilled the former Pearle Vision space.

Even with the above activity occurring, Shoppes on Maine is still far from complete. However it is very exciting to see that it is pushing in the right direction.

It is also just one of many examples currently occurring throughout the city that demonstrates the power of DMC. A few others examples are the City of Rochester along with Mayo Clinic planning to purchase and preserve the historic Chateau Theatre in downtown Rochester for $6 million, the Rochester Recreation Center undergoing a multi-million dollar renovation as is the Rochester Civic Center, and a sizable amount of new development currently occurring in the northwest portion of town that was previously sleepy for numerous years.

I think it’s safe to say the next 20 years should be interesting for the state’s 3rd largest city!

Charlie Hexum | Retail Leasing Specialist
Mid-America Real Estate – Minnesota, LLC

5353 Wayzata Boulevard, Suite 650 | Minneapolis, MN 55416
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