Lakewalk Surgery Centre, London Road Car Wash to Develop Duluth Medical Campus

Now, the medical group is set to buy its formerly neighboring London Road Car Wash & Lube at 1530 London Road. According to the manager of the car care business, the sale hasn’t closed yet, but he acknowledged that a deal is being worked out.

Lakewalk administrator Ann Fosnes could not be reached for comment Friday. But LakeWalk’s Dr. Andrew Bartsch has petitioned the city to reorganize the property for an existing medical complex as well as a mixed-use-institutional designation. That request was supported by the Duluth Planning Commission, which on 8 June voted to approve the zoning change 5-0. On Monday, Duluth city council could take the next step toward creating new zoning officers when it reads out a proposed ordinance for it. first time. The final approval can be obtained in the next meeting of the council on September 27.

While LakeWalk’s footprint is likely to increase with zoning changes, its owners have signed an agreement that they will not significantly increase the height of the existing lakefront complex.

The Lakewalk Surgery Center previously purchased and demolished Valentini's former restaurant to create additional parking and landscaping.  Steve Kuchera / Duluth News Tribune

The Lakewalk Surgery Center previously purchased and demolished Valentini’s former restaurant to create additional parking and landscaping. Steve Kuchera / Duluth News Tribune

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“The developer has informed us that they intend to put forward a district plan for that campus, and that district plan will cover all existing buildings and any possible phases. We do not have details about further phases. Maybe. But we certainly recognize the importance of revitalization along London Road, and we value the investment that the owners of Lakewalk Surgery Center have already made in that area. So, we look at that complex. Very keen to see that mature,” said Adam Fulton, deputy director of Duluth’s Department of Planning and Economic Development.

Fulton explained that the district plan would give city planners a hand in shaping the campus’s future development. “But it is also very beneficial for the ownership group, because then when they are ready to go ahead with the projects, they have already planned for them, and those plans have already been approved by the planning commission. So, they are able to come in and just get a building permit, versus waiting and needing to go through a different process for each individual property. This provides expediency and certainty for the developer,” he added. .

Fulton said LakeWalk’s growth plans build on ongoing investments by nearby health care providers Essentia Health and St. Luke’s in Duluth’s medical industry.

“It really believes that for the Upper Midwest, Duluth is a regional medical center, and we have a number of institutions that help incorporate a medical care community with different campuses, obviously different from one another. ,” They said.

    The London Road Car Wash & Lube, on the left, is adjacent to Lakewalk North, Center, and less than two blocks from the Lakewalk Surgery Centre.  The city is considering a request to reconnect the two blocks.  Steve Kuchera / Duluth News Tribune

The London Road Car Wash & Lube, on the left, is adjacent to Lakewalk North, Center, and less than two blocks from the Lakewalk Surgery Centre. The city is considering a request to reconnect the two blocks. Steve Kuchera / Duluth News Tribune

“When a medical group like this develops in your community, there are benefits. People get used to coming to the area for medical services and treatment. And you have a lot of medical personnel, as well as everyone else. There are people involved in maintaining medicine. Technology, which leads to a really high level of innovation. So, in part, it’s based on other things happening in the state of Minnesota, which is a center of medical innovation, and It’s natural to imagine seeing this kind of continued investment, both in Minnesota and in various areas of the state, including Duluth,” Fulton said.

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