Mayo Clinic is looking to build a five-story building to expand the archival facility where it stores its ”Tissue Registry” of patient samples in northwest Rochester.

The proposed plan is to build a 67,760-square-foot building in two phases next to the 48-year-old facility at 835 Civic Center Drive NW and connect the two buildings.

Plans call for building the new structure to the north of the existing building, which is just west of the former Freight Yard/Beer Bellyz bar, where Groome Transportation is planning to establish a shuttle hub.

Dr. Joseph Maleszewski, an anatomic pathologist at Mayo Clinic, explains that while some might call the facility a “warehouse,” it is more like a library.

“This building is the home of Mayo Clinic’s Tissue Registry, which is an archival facility where biological specimens are stored on behalf of our patients. The biological specimens are stored in Tissue Registry in case additional testing is requested by the patient or his/her health care team,” he wrote via email.

A team of about 16 employees staff the complex.

The conditional-use proposal filed by Mayo Clinic this week says the first two-story phase of the project will add 31,490 square feet to the operation. Blueprints of those floors show “wet tissue storage,” slide storage and block storage areas.

The planned additional three stories, with 36,376 square feet, will be added later.

Construction was predicted by the WSB planners to begin in 2019 “and may not finish until 2020.”

What’s driving the need to expand the facility?

“Because Tissue Registry retains tissue specimens indefinitely so that they may be of use to Mayo Clinic patients, their families and the patients’ health care providers, we do have a need to expand our footprint to accommodate additional samples,” wrote Maleszewski.

Biz buzz

The word among the scissors and clippers crowd is that a Med City hair salon may close up shop for good at the end of this month.

I’ll see if I can sweep up any details about who and why.

Jeff Kiger tracks business action in Rochester and southeastern Minnesota every day in Heard on the Street. Send tips to or via Twitter to @whereskiger. You can call him at 285-7798.

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Jeff has worked at newspapers as a reporter, columnist, editor, photographer and copy editor since 1992. He started at the Post Bulletin in 1999. Kiger is the PB's business reporter and writes a daily column, "Heard on the Street."

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