With an eye toward the waterfront plan being created by the city, the developer that owns the former Kmart area has added the former AMPI property to their Rochester portfolio.
“I guess I’m the dog that caught another bumper,” Pat Regan quipped when asked about the deal.
The Regan family, through its Camegaran LLC company, purchased the more 13-acre property with the 256,631-square-foot former Associated Milk Producers Inc. plant at 700 First Ave. SE for $3.75 million.
The deal closed on Monday. George Bayrd of Rochester's Hamilton Real Estate represented the dairy cooperative, and Rochester Realtor Merl Groteboer of Re/Max Results represented Camegaran.
Regan cited the new Downtown Waterfront Southeast Small Area Plan in development by the city as being very “influential” toward inspiring the AMPI purchase.
Both the AMPI property and the former Kmart site, which Regan bought for $7 million in 2019, feature prominently in a vision of a redeveloped, “people centric,” mixed-use waterfront area. The planning area covers 60 acres along about 1,600 feet of the Zumbro River.
Regan cautioned that this purchase is just a first step in what will probably be a massive “generational” project to redevelop that part of downtown Rochester.
“We have a lot of discerning to do ... There’s a lot of ground to still be covered in the planning phase with the city,” he said. “What we do know is that it’s good land in a unique place, and it was available now … and it gets us to the riverfront.”
When a deal with Rochester’s Titan Development & Investments recently fell through, AMPI had planned to demolish the facility. That’s on hold as the waterfront proposal is hammered out by the city.
“I think most, if not all, of the AMPI plant will be demolished, but that’s still to be determined,” he said.
In the meantime, Mayo Clinic will continue to lease the Kmart area as a park-and-ride parking lot. Regan sees that as a “mid-range” use that will generate revenue as the long-term plan is worked out. Crucial to what happens will be “listening to the market,” he said.
The Regan family has a long history in Rochester with Pat Regan’s father, the recently deceased Don Regan, forming Premier Bank here in 1990 and having involvement in many local development projects.
“We intend to continue to do a lot in Rochester. We have a lot of faith in Mayo Clinic’s mission and the city’s mission,” he said.