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Launched in 2014 by journalist Sean Baker, Med City Beat is an independent news source covering government, business and culture in Rochester, Minnesota.

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12-story tower proposed for American Legion site in downtown Rochester

12-story tower proposed for American Legion site in downtown Rochester

A California developer wants to build a 12-story hotel on the site now occupied by the American Legion.

The proposal from EKN Development Group would be the firm's first development in Rochester. Plans call for a hotel lobby on the street level; parking on floors 2-5; a private club space on floor 6; beverage, dining, patio, garden, pool, fitness and conference rooms on the seventh level; and guest rooms on floors 8-12.

Reached by phone Wednesday afternoon, project manager Darina Sokanthong said the firm is always looking to expand its portfolio in communities with vibrant hospitals, universities and airports.

"With plans for DMC and Mayo Clinic expanding, we see a great opportunity in Rochester," said Sokanthong. 

EKN, headquartered in Newport Beach, Calif., is partnering with HKS Architects and WSB & Associates on the project. WSB is a Minneapolis-based design firm with an office in Rochester.

Sokanthong was not able to provide any financial details, including whether EKN has closed on the purchase of the site. According to county records, the property was valued at just over $1 million in 2017, a 33 percent increase from its estimated value in 2015.

A representative from the American Legion could not be reached for comment Wednesday. An informational meeting on the project is scheduled for April 13, 6 p.m at the Legion.

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Cover photo: Med City Beat

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