M. A. Mortenson Co. will lead Mayo Clinic's development of up to 2 million square feet of research and education space in the Destination Medical Center Discovery Square district, the clinic announced today.

Mayo's collaboration with the Minnesota-based private real estate developer marks a major step forward in DMC plans as Mayo prepares to lead building in Discovery Square, a hub for bio-medicine, research and technology innovation.

"Discovery Square's establishment is a critical component of the greater DMC vision, and the collaboration with Mortenson brings Mayo Clinic closer to realizing the positive impact that Discovery Square will make," Jeff Bolton, Mayo vice president of administration, said in a news release.

"This milestone marks a step toward accelerating innovative research, facilitating Mayo Clinic's capabilities to find solutions for the unmet needs of patients with the most complex health care conditions and transform the practice of medicine," said Bolton, who is also chairman of the DMC Economic Development Agency Board.

Mayo announced plans in June for its development of Discovery Square. The clinic plans to add up to 2 million square feet of research, education, commercial and product development space over the next two decades, more than doubling its research footprint. Mayo now owns about 1.3 million square feet of research space in Rochester.

The clinic owns about 35 percent of the six-block core of the Discovery Square district. It would plan to share space in its development with private researchers and technology developers. Discovery Square is anticipated in DMC plans to be a major driver of the $6.5 billion initiative's projected job growth and private spending.

Groundbreaking on the first of several buildings is expected next year with a completion date in 2019, according to the release.

Mayo plans to occupy about half the space in its first building in Discovery Square, which could be 60,000 to 100,000 square feet, according to Doug Holtan, vice-chairman of Mayo department of facilities and support services.

Mortenson comes with a wide portfolio of high-profile developments in Minnesota, nationwide and worldwide, including as the construction manager at risk on the U.S. Bank Stadium project in Minneapolis.

"We are honored to partner with Mayo Clinic on their vision for a global destination for health and wellness in Rochester," David Mortenson, chairman of M.A. Mortenson Company, said in a news release. "Discovery Square will serve as a keystone of the Destination Medical Center economic development initiative that will successfully bring together biomedical research, education, and innovation through unparalleled public-private investment in the city, the region and the state."

More information on DMC plans and districts is available online at dmc.mn.

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