Essentia Health, City of Duluth Hold Public Meeting About Vision Northland

The project is expected to finish in 2022.

DULUTH, Minn. – Plans and discussions are moving forward for Duluth’s largest private investment ever, a massive multi–million dollar transformation of the downtown medical campus for Essentia Health St. Mary’s Medical Center.

Essentia Health and the city of Duluth held a public information meeting, the first one regarding this project, giving the community the chance to really see the plans and understand what’s happening.

The meeting was standing room only at Central Hillside Community Center as people were packed shoulder to shoulder just to listen to the plans for Vision Northland and leave their comments.

“We’re doing this for the community, and I think we want to make sure we have lots of avenues to get feedback. We have a website that’s got a place for people to submit questions and submit input for us, so this is one of many vehicles we’re trying to use to really get input and make sure this serves the community and our patients and our staff the best it can for many, many years to come,” senior Vice President of Operations at Essentia Mark Heyward said.

The project, which costs $800 million, will build an 815 thousand square foot new space and renovate approximately 115 thousand square feet in existing facilities. Essentia will spend about $675 million to construct a new hospital tower, clinic and outpatient surgery center, and will spend another 125 million on related infrastructure and financing.

“We’re hoping it creates a better facility, opens up some view sheds currently that right now, the buildings are obscuring of Lake Superior, so it should create a better, more modern, updated facility, one that’s more compact , and hopefully be more in tune with the neighborhood,” Keith Haime, director of planning services, said.

People can visit the Essentia website to learn more about the construction, and leave more comments or questions they have.

Construction is expected to start sometime next year and finish in 2022.

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