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Mayo Clinic partnering with Singapore developer on 11-story Gonda expansion

Mayo Clinic partnering with Singapore developer on 11-story Gonda expansion

Mayo Clinic announced Tuesday that it plans to partner with Singapore-based Pontiac Land Group on an 11-story expansion of the Gonda Building. The addition, which is being proposed for the northern-most portion of the building, will include four floors of clinical space and a seven-story hotel.

While final details are still being worked out, Mayo said it plans to invest $190 million into the clinical portion of the development. The additional clinical space —200,000 square feet in all — will likely be used to expand the Mayo Clinic Cancer Center and Outpatient Procedure Center.

As part of the project, Mayo will also enter into a joint venture with Pontiac Land for ownership of a new “premier hotel” on the top seven floors of the expansion. The hotel will be developed by Pontiac Land and operated by a “major hotel group” to be identified at a later date.

Rendering of initial concept / Courtesy Mayo Clinic

Rendering of initial concept / Courtesy Mayo Clinic

Dr. Michael Harper, executive dean of practice for Mayo, said the development will help Mayo keep up with increasing demand for its services. The Rochester-based health practice is currently in the midst of major expansions to all three of its campuses.

“We’re experiencing significant patient care space constraints on our Rochester campus, so we’re excited that this collaboration with Pontiac Land allows us to reach our expansion goals earlier to ensure that we have the infrastructure in place to provide the best possible care to our patients for generations to come,” Dr. Harper said Tuesday.

Preliminary plans call for construction to begin by the end of 2019 or early 2020, with the project being completed by the end of 2022. During construction, the building will continue to operate with minimal disruptions, said Mayo Clinic spokesperson Kelley Luckstein.

The Gonda Building serves as the center of Mayo’s world-renowned integrated practice. This will be the third and final phase of construction on the building. The first phase of the building was completed in 2003.

The development is not expected to require any public funding. Any investment, however, made by Mayo Clinic will count toward its $3.5 billion contribution to the Destination Medical Center initiative.

In a statement sent out Tuesday morning, Lisa Clarke, executive director of the DMC Economic Development Agency, said the collaboration with Pontiac Land “continues to prove that Rochester is an attractive market for investors and developers from around the globe.”

Who is Pontiac Land Group?

Mayo’s collaborator on the project, Pontiac Land Group, has developed a number of luxury hotels and office towers across Sinagpore (including the hotel used for the U.S.-North Korea summit back in June).

The third-generation company is owned by the four Kwee siblings, who together form one of the wealthiest families in all of Asia.

Representatives from Pontiac Land, including Philip Kwee, the company’s chief operating officer, have been making regular trips to Rochester in recent years to discuss the project with Mayo leadership.

Kwee said Tuesday that he looks forward to “delivering a distinctive hospitality experience to match Mayo Clinic’s clinical excellence.”

Dr. Terese Horlocker, a Mayo Clinic anesthesiologist and chair of Mayo’s Midwest Facilities Committee, said the expansion of the Gonda is only possible because of the partnership with Pontiac Land.

“Our medical teams experience ongoing clinical space constraints,” said Dr. Horlocker. “We have explored options to accelerate the expansion of the Gonda Building. However, without a collaborator, the expansion would not be possible for at least a decade and at a significant additional cost.”

The tallest in ROchester

At 490 feet, the vertically-expanded Gonda will be the tallest building in Rochester — and the highest point in Minnesota outside of Minneapolis.

Locally, the height of the hotel will surpass the Broadway Plaza building, along with the now-under-construction Hilton project.

It is also taller than any part of the proposed Bloom development.

Last night, the Rochester City Council gave final approval to a plan from Bloom International Realty to redevelop the downtown waterfront. (The project still requires a council vote on the tax assistance package.)

Up until that point, as noted by Council Member Michael Wojcik, one of the Bloom towers had been the tallest planned structure in Rochester.

Cover photo by Med City Beat

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