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Fond Du Lac plans new CAIR building


West Fourth Street is about to get a brand new clinic building if all goes according to plan for Fond Du Lac Development. The project would be located right down the block from another new development, the recently completed Steve O'Neil Apartments, which wrapped up construction last month and has already shown a significant impact on the neighborhood.

The Fond Du Lac Tribe has submitted plans to the city of Duluth for a new clinic building to be constructed at 464 Mesaba Avenue next to their current CAIR (Center for American Indian Resources) clinic and on the same block as Scared Heart Music Center.

Designed by DSGW of Duluth the new 40,000 square foot clinic would stand three stories tall and feature indoor parking on the first level for 24 vehicles including two handicap spaces. The exterior of structure would feature a large amount of red brick along with metal accents and a large number of windows.


New CAIR Medical Building designed by DSGW | Duluth Planning Commission

With increased demand in recent years for medical care a logical need for more space has also arisen. The creation of a new building will allow for the expansion of medical care, pharmacy, radiology, and lab space. The new structure will also allow new services to be introduced such as occupational and physical therapy, adult and adolescent chemical dependency treatment, and behavioral health counseling.

Fond Du Lac chose this specific site for this project due to fact that no other suitable sites were available in desired locations and areas. The proposed site was the most logical as the original CAIR clinic sits directly next door the new space and will therefore allow for a seamless transition for new patients and those who have been coming to the clinic for years. In addition it will also continue to bring new jobs and growth for the neighborhood.


There are a few challenges associated with the project that have required that multiple documents be submitted to the city planning commission. Due to the lack of adequate parking space on site along with the challenges of constructing new parking lots on a sloping grade and on a site of bedrock, the developers are looking to establish parking on two neighboring sites. One is located at the corner of West 4th Street and Third Avenue West and the second on the corner of West 4th Street and Third Avenue West.

These two lots would provide additional parking for the clinic as the spaces on the first floor of the being would be reserved for patients and emergency drop offs. Staff would also have the ability to park in the alleyway behind the new structure.

Results from last nights Planning Commission meeting will be available within the next few days. If all goes according to plan construction could begin as soon as this summer.

Feel free to post any comments below regarding your thoughts on this project.

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