Month: February 2016

Youth Startup Weekend: Taking Business from an idea to reality in one weekend

youth startup weekend

With the growth and opportunity taking place in Rochester these days, it’s no surprise that even our youth are displaying an entrepreneurial spirit.

Young innovators will unite for Rochester’s first Youth Startup Weekend, integrating elements of art, design, science, technology, engineering, and math with business and entrepreneurship, at the University Center Rochester on March 18­-20.

Youth build business in a weekend, from idea to reality. And it’s free.

The historic Chateau Theatre: What was and what could be

Photos by Julie Sawyer

Community input is and will always be core to the efforts of DMC. This past winter, DMC utilized the vacant Chateau Theatre space for a unique luncheon event during which attendees were invited to share both their memories of the Chateau Theatre and ideas for future use of the space.

They recalled many memories from the Chateau’s days gone by. The theater’s unique décor was the perfect setting to catch up with a friend or enjoy a leisurely cup of joe. Grandparents, parents, and grown children alike read books together in the “castle” and sat on Santa’s lap. Rochester’s own Mayor Ardell Brede took his now-wife of 54 years on their first date to a movie at the theater.

Post Bulletin: Our View: Change requires defined expectations

After waiting a few minutes to speak during a downtown press conference on transportation this week, Rochester City Council Member Michael Wojcik glanced over his shoulder and referenced the possibility that new buildings may have popped up during his wait.

The joke featuring unrealistic expectations in the midst of Destination Medical Center efforts draws attention to blossoming realities: Developers are looking for local opportunities, and growth is coming.

In the wake of St. Cloud-based developer Larry Brutger’s decision to back off plans to erect a new Holiday Inn across from Mayo Clinic’s Saint Marys Hospital, a related reality is being brought to light — development takes time, and everything doesn’t always go as planned.

Star Tribune: Rochester couple renovate historic Conley-Maass building

Visitors mingling during the event.

Drawn to Rochester for medical treatment at the Mayo Clinic, Traci Downs and her husband, Hunter, originally thought they’d be in southeast Minnesota for only six weeks.

That was a few years and a business relocation ago.

Now permanent residents, the Downses this summer plan to open one of the first buildings in the state’s largest-ever economic development project. Their renovated Conley-Maass building, a former woolen mill and factory just blocks from the Mayo Clinic, will house, among other things, a restaurant, two tech companies and a “Maker’s Lab” equipped with a 3-D printer.

Healing through the arts

It’s very common to see patients and companions enjoying music or events in downtown Rochester’s Heart of the City.

Arts and culture are powerful tools with which to engage communities at various levels of growth and build community leadership – but they can also help in the healing process. At the Delores Jean Lavins Center for Humanities in Medicine at Mayo Clinic Rochester, staff and volunteers see the benefits of incorporating the arts into the healing process every day.

healing-art-brain“Many hospitals across the United States offer some form of arts programming,” says Dr. Johanna Rian, director of the Center for Humanities, “but Mayo Clinic has been offering the arts as part of the healing process since the early ‘80s.”

DMC seeks volunteers for Heart of the City Public Space Design Community Advisory Committee

The Destination Medical Center (DMC) development plan identifies six sub-districts, each of which is anchored by a dramatically new or enhanced public space. The sub-district called Heart of the City lies at the intersection of Rochester’s medical environment and the hospitality/entertainment district. At the “heart” of Heart of the City is the Peace Plaza, home to many of the community’s most popular public events.Heart-of-the-City-Patient-Exp

A public skating rink, stunning light and glass features, and attractive portals to other districts are among the concepts used to illustrate the future of the public spaces in Heart of the City.

Encouraged by community support for these ideas, the board of Destination Medical Center Corporation (DMCC) and the City of Rochester are working together to identify a design team to lead the public space design process. With anticipation for a completed design in 2016 and a phased implementation in 2017, a Community Advisory Committee (CAC) is being established to aid in the Heart of the City public space design.

Thomas Fisher to speak at Conley-Maass Special Reception

DMC’s vision of making Rochester America’s City for Health incorporates the incredible work taking place inside the walls of Mayo Clinic and applying it to everyday life experiences for the people of Rochester, its visitors, patients, and companions. But the future of Rochester can’t be dependent on Mayo Clinic alone.

tom fisherThomas Fisher is professor and director of the Metropolitan Design Center at the University of Minnesota and the most recent addition to the DMC Economic Development Agency (EDA) board of directors. Tom has spent more than 35 years as a teacher, writer, and urban designer. Tom will be the featured speaker at the Conley-Maass Special Reception on Thursday, February 18 and will share his thoughts on the importance of place as it relates to the entrepreneurial landscape of a community.

KIMT: Mayor: DMC project takes big step forward

The Destination Medical Center continues to move forward, and on Thursday, Rochester Mayor Ardell Brede said it might have taken a big step.

DMC, which is backed by Mayo Clinic and the state of Minnesota, is expected to transform areas of Rochester and add up to 40,000 jobs over the next two decades.

One of the sections expected to be worked on is called “The Heart of the City” which is located near Peace Plaza.

Mayor Brede says the city is putting together an advisory committee made up of nine to 12 people to help guide the project. Their job will include getting proposals from companies and possibly making suggestions to the City Council.

Brede says it’s time to start acting on DMC.

Star Tribune: Rochester is in the midst of an apartment boom

Maine Heights will have 359 new units and will be built along Hwy. 52 in the southwestern part of the city.
Maine Heights will have 359 new units and will be built along Hwy. 52 in the southwestern part of the city.

A wave of new apartments opened in Rochester last year, and even more are planned this year with both suburban and downtown projects in the development pipeline.

It’s unclear whether the surge is just a normal upturn in the Rochester market’s building cycle or if it’s being spurred by the Mayo Clinic’s effort, with local and state help, for expansion. That development is called Destination Medical Center and has a goal to add 45,000 new jobs over 20 years to the city. Some apartment developers are specifically mentioning the Mayo’s expansion as a reason for investing in the market.

The city’s surge in new multifamily units — while small in numbers compared to the apartment-building binge in the Twin Cities — is impressive for sheer magnitude.

DMC’s Heart of the City seeks volunteers for Public Space Design Community Advisory Committee

ROCHESTER, Minn. – A Community Advisory Committee (CAC) for the Heart of the City public space design is being formed In collaboration with the City of Rochester and the Destination Medical Center Corporation (DMCC). This volunteer committee will assist with the planning and design for the public spaces of the Heart of the City, a sub-district of the Destination Medical Center (DMC) Development Plan at the intersection of First Street SW and First Avenue SW.

“Heart of the City will create a true center for Rochester, a cross-roads where Mayo Clinic, commercial, hospitality, retail and residential meet,” Said Mayor Ardele Brede, who will co-chair the Community Advisory Committee and DMC Corporation Board Member R.T. Rybak.

The nine- to 12-member committee will consist of business and property owners, civic leaders, citizen at-large members, partner organizations, design experts, a City Council representative and a Chateau Theatre Task Force representative.