The Assistive Tech Challenge pitch competition, presented by Destination Medical Center Discovery Square, was developed to explore ways to facilitate greater independence for individuals with disabilities and address the daily challenges they face. It also strives to help minimize the direct support workforce crisis confronting communities in the region and across the United States.
It is some of these same challenges that Brandon Sampson wanted to solve when he first launched the Rochester-based boutique prosthetic and orthotic company Limb Lab. “We asked clients to list five specific goals they wanted to achieve,” Sampson explains. Then, the Limb Lab team would keep those goals top-of-mind as they sought ways to improve the daily independence and overall quality of life of their clients.
You might have been caught by surprise if you walked by the Peace Plaza on a brisk October evening and saw more than 200 people gathered together sharing a family-style meal outside. But that’s exactly what happened on October 17 during the inaugural Destination Medical Center (DMC) Annual Meeting, where the community came together to celebrate the impact of the first five years of the 20-year DMC initiative.
(Rochester, Minnesota) Sept. 25, 2018 – The Destination Medical Center Corporation (DMCC) Board of Directors today recognized significant progress with several DMC projects. Among them – One Discovery Square – a Mortenson development consisting of 90,000 square feet of lab and office space that will cater to the life science economy.
Mortenson Director of Real Estate Development Jeremy Jacobs updated the Board on progress, and when asked about any new leases, he noted that Epic has signed on as a new tenant, joining previously announced anchor tenants Mayo Clinic and the University of Minnesota Rochester. Additional companies (large and small) will be announced within 60 – 90 days. One Discovery Square is expected to open in April 2019.
The success of Minneapolis in creating a new vibrancy in its downtown urban core didn’t happen because of one or two development projects – or because of a single event like hosting the Super Bowl. Rather, it was the result of many diverse and civic-minded players working to stitch together a puzzle of very different ideas and interests to create a shared vision of renewal.
That was a key takeaway from the third annual “best practices” tour of Minneapolis’s city center on August 30 by a cross-section of Rochester civic and business leaders.
As in previous years, the 2018 tour was organized by the Destination Medical Center Economic Development Agency (DMC EDA) and curated by University of Minnesota urban design researcher Tim Griffin.
As Destination Medical Center (DMC) stakeholders ponder how the evolution of Rochester’s Heart of the City and Discovery Square sub-districts will play out, civic leaders got an up-close look at one new development in downtown Minneapolis that offered some valuable “best practices” examples on how it could be done.
An August 30 bus tour was coordinated by DMC Economic Development Agency (EDA) to study how Minneapolis has been rejuvenating its urban core in recent years. Representatives from Rochester’s business, political, governmental, and cultural sectors spent valuable time at the “Kraus-Anderson mixed-use block,” located near the Hennepin County Medical Center in the “East Town” section of downtown, an area that’s long been dominated by underused surface parking lots.
Destination Medical Center (DMC) is moving at a good pace, and it seems like every time we turn around there is something different or new happening in the DMC District that is changing the landscape in an exciting way. We’ve created a way that you can track the momentum easily with the click of a button on the new DMC Metrics Dashboard.
This new tool offers an at a glance way to stay up to speed on the progress being made toward each of the goals outlined in the DMC Development Plan.
Chris Schad is a driving force behind Destination Medical Center’s Discovery Square. He directs business and economic development for the healthcare technology hub that is the cornerstone of the Destination Medical Center (DMC) initiative. He works to recruit healthcare companies to Rochester and attract investment capital to the region. He is also passionate about growing the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Rochester, a key to our community’s long-term success.
We spent some time with Chris to learn more about his priorities for Discovery Square and why he thinks Rochester is a hidden gem.
Though skylines are often the most recognizable feature of notable American cities, the activity taking place on the ground is where we find the human-to-human connections that make up the true heart of a community. Destination Medical Center – together with community leaders, business owners, engaged citizens, and the City of Rochester – is strategically exploring the best ways to nurture life and activity at street level.
“Discovery Walk” is the public realm that runs along four blocks of 2nd Avenue Southwest (from the Heart of the City at 2nd Street to Soldiers Field Park at 6th Street). The plan is to transform the underused and uninviting two-lane street into a tree-lined, multi-use linear parkway.
A Message from DMC EDA Executive Director Lisa Clarke:
Destination Medical Center (DMC) was a topic at a recent 2018 State legislative preview hosted by the Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce. In attendance were Republican and Democratic leaders from the House and Senate, including Speaker of the House Kurt Daudt, House Minority Representative Rick Hansen, Deputy Senate Majority Leader Jeremy Miller, and Assistant Senate Minority Leader Susan Kent.
As part of the discussion, the leaders were asked for their thoughts on DMC. There is strong support. All legislators agreed DMC is a model for economic development and job growth for communities throughout Minnesota.