DMC Reality Check: Making the Plans - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

DMC Reality Check: Making the Plans

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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- After nearly six months since the Destination Medical Center legislation hit Governor Dayton's desk, Rochester is a city lying in wait.

"It's the future of our city, and that makes it pretty important," said Rochester City Council Representative and DMCC Board Member Ed Hruska.

Waiting for nearly $6 billion, 35,000 new jobs, millions of visitors, a new skyline and bureaucracy.

"There's a lot of this, I won't call it busy work, but there's a lot of maybe administrative that has to happen," said Mayor Ardell Brede who also serves on the DMCC Board.

Right now Rochester looks like a quiet city.

The cranes and construction crews haven't moved in just yet.

But looks can be deceiving.

"Really there is a lot of work going on behind the scenes as the details come together," said Rochester City Council President Randy Staver.

Rochester didn't go from the small town of the 1950's to the city we know today without a lot of planning.

So before more buildings fall or fresh concrete is poured, the law says we now have to plan.

"What we want to do in Rochester is not just let development just happen," said Lisa Clarke, Mayo Clinic's DMC Administrator. "We want to create a thoughtful deliberate plan so that the development really meets the needs of the DMC vision."

The development plan needs to include a lot. Any project that's going to happen -- from the magnificent to the mundane -- needs to be part of The Plan.

All of that growth and development -- everything that really actually counts toward those DMC numbers or gets tax money -- needs to happen in a very small geographic area, right in downtown Rochester.

The first people to start building these grand plans are at the epicenter.

"The job of the EDA is to develop and implement the development plan," said Clarke

It's Mayo Clinic's job to put together the EDA. That part isn't done yet.

"They'll be like the working staff," said Hruska

Once the EDA is fully functioning -- those people will take the ideas, from citizens, developers and of course The Clinic -- and turn pipe dreams into plans.

"And then it will come forward to the DMCC Board for approval," said Hruska

The DMCC board was created in the state law. It has four members appointed by Gov. Mark Dayton, a clinic representative, one from the county and two from the city.

"But I do not wear the Mayor hat when I'm on that," said Mayor Brede. "Neither does Ed Hruska. We're on there as a member of that corporation."

The eight of them have to say yes to The Plan -- then it's on to the city.

They have a lot to consider before they sign off on it.

"The downtown Master Plan, the Comprehensive Plan, all the different laws that we have that we base our decisions on now for the City Council," said Hruska

The plan can be amended -- so they don't have to get it right the first time.

But they need to get it done.

Because developers are waiting, and developers don't like uncertainty.

"We don't know if a project that might be proposed today would actually meet the criteria of the plan," said Staver.

So the risky may chance it, but the rest will wait.

"That's going to take them until next October to get that put together," said Mayor Brede.

Next October.

Then maybe we'll see the cranes.

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