Rochester, MN (KROC AM News) - Mayo Clinic has announced the next major step in its DMC initiative, this one involving the Discovery Square district.

Mayo says it has started the process to identify a developer to add more than 2 million square feet to its downtown campus as research, commercial and product development space over the next 20 years. Mayo’s current research footprint consists of 1.3 million square feet.

Mayo expects construction to begin next year on the first of several buildings in the Discovery Square district. Work on the new building is expected to be completed within two years. Mayo says the first building will be 60,000 - 100,000 square feet.

Discovery Square is a six-square-block area designed to include life science businesses, new start-ups and residential options. It’s located between South Broadway and Sixth Avenue Southwest. Mayo describes it as a first-of-its-kind urban bioresearch campus.

The announcement was good news for the head of the governing board of the DMC initiative.

Discovery Square is at the heart of the DMC mission to make Rochester America's city for health,” says Minnesota Lt. Governor Tina Smith, DMC Corporation board chair. “Mayo Clinic's decision to invest in new bioscience innovation, will encourage additional national and international investment in Rochester. It will spur job creation and diversify the economy in Rochester and southeastern Minnesota. This is exactly the kind of transformational project we created the DMC to accomplish, and it represents significant progress toward our goal of transforming Rochester and Minnesota into world-class destinations for health and wellness.”

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