Press Release: Committee Named – Destination Medical Center and City of Rochester Establish Heart of the City Community Advisory Committee

Destination Medical Center and City of Rochester Establish Heart of the City Community Advisory Committee

Fourteen Volunteer Members Named to Assist with Design for Public Spaces

ROCHESTER, Minn. (April 5, 2106) –The Rochester City Council has approved the membership of the Community Advisory Committee (CAC) for the Heart of the City public space design.

Formed through a collaboration between the City of Rochester and the Destination Medical Center (DMC) Corporation, the 14-member volunteer CAC will assist with the design for public spaces of the Heart of the City DMC sub-district at the intersection of First Street SW and First Avenue SW. As envisioned by the DMC Development Plan, Heart of the City will bring together Mayo Clinic, commercial, hospitality, retail and residential sectors, while also serving as a gateway to other DMC sub-districts.

The CAC will be co-chaired by Rochester Mayor Ardell Brede and Executive Director of Generation Next and former Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak, both members of the DMC Corporation Board of Directors.

“The CAC members include community members from diverse backgrounds and a broad range of professionals from all age demographics and geographic locations in the community,” said Brede.

CAC members are:

  • Javon Bea, Property Owner
  • Jenna Bowman, Rochester Downtown Alliance
  • Nick Campion, Rochester City Council Member
  • Gail Eadie, Architect
  • Ahmed Elkhalifataha, Oxford Property Management
  • Tom Fisher, Metropolitan Design Center, University of Minnesota
  • Jeanine Gangeness, Winona State University
  • Tom Hexum, Property Owner
  • Stephen Lehmkuhle, University of Minnesota Rochester
  • Nick Moucha, Downtown Neighborhood Association
  • Sunny Prabhakar, The Commission
  • Dr. Sandhya Pruthi, Medical Director, Patient Experience, Mayo Clinic
  • Taylor Ridderbusch, Rochester Area Builders
  • John Wade, Business Owner

“On behalf of the DMC Corporation Board of Directors, we are delighted to welcome the members of the Community Advisory Committee,” said Rybak. “This is a very important phase for the Heart of the City, as it extends and enhances Peace Plaza to create active experiences and engaging gateways to other DMC sub-districts downtown. Our goal is to create public space where truly everyone is welcome and everyone wants to be.”

Among its responsibilities, the CAC will participate in the selection of a qualified design team to assist with the design for the public spaces of Heart of the City.

“The CAC members bring a wealth of experience and community engagement that will play a vital role in bringing to life Heart of the City as the center of a vibrant downtown Rochester,” said Brede. “We are very encouraged by the tremendous response from qualified individuals expressed interest. We look forward to working with the CAC and invite community members to remain involved once the design process begins.”

The CAC will also be responsible for maintaining community engagement during the process, establishing a means by which to keep adjacent property owners informed, meeting with the design team to provide input and reaction to design concepts, making recommendations to DMC Corporation and the City of Rochester at key project milestones, and attending five to eight committee meetings during the 2016 design process.