What's next for the Rochester Kmart parking lot?

It's a story that's garnered heat, controversy and lots of attention.

Posted: Jan 7, 2020 2:02 AM
Updated: Jan 7, 2020 5:06 AM

ROCHESTER, Minn. -

Many Slatterly Park residents opposed the idea of a Mayo Clinic parking lot in the neighborhood because of safety, traffic and a perceived lack of communication between homeowners and developers.

27 people were signed up at the podium to air their grievances about the project, with many saying it was a bad idea from the beginning.

"If you add the 1800 cars to what we have now, the neighborhood is going to blow up," Margaret Nelson, a resident said.

Kelly Kirkpatrick doesn't like the idea.

"Attention isn't being paid to what the best thing is for Rochester, its environment, its people," Kirkpatrick said.

Stephanie Hurt with Mayo Clinic Parking and Transportation says they need the lot.

"Through this specific lot, we are focused on the needs of our staff working 12-hour shifts, particularly at St. Mary's," Hurt said. "Leasing spaces at this lot would greatly serve this need."

City Councilmember Mark Bilderback has grown weary of the conflict.

"You get emails, daily phonecalls, you get letters, you get pretty much a gamut across the board," Bilderback said.

Ultimately - City Council voted to table giving the developer a conditional use permit for the parking lot and to approve a park and ride lease between the City of Rochester, Camegaren, LLC and Mayo Clinic. They will have a couple of months until they can make their decision.

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