Planned Parenthood redesign could triple patient base in Uptown

A view from Lagoon & Emerson of the proposed Planned Parenthood building.

Planned Parenthood is seeking city approval for a new three-story clinic and office building on its current site at Lagoon & Emerson.

The Uptown building, open since 1995, currently sees 13,000 patients each year. The new building aims to meet high demand for services and serve up to three times as many patients.

“That’s the hope, is to be able to serve more people,” said Jen Aulwes, communications director for Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota.

Staff at the new building would provide all the same services available today, including ob-gyn exams, STD testing, treatment and vaccines; cancer screening; pregnancy testing and men’s health care. The center would also begin providing medication abortion, which is a non-surgical method of terminating pregnancies at up to 10 weeks of gestation.

Patient focus groups helped design the new center, and the No. 1 request was onsite parking, according to staff. The current design would hold 76 parking spaces above and below ground. Patients also requested a warm atmosphere with plants and pieces by local artists.

The building is designed with extra security in mind, secured by a gate after-hours.

Pending city approval, the center would either break ground in the late fall of 2018 or the spring of 2019, with a nine-month timeline for construction. While the new building is under construction, patients who call for appointments will receive a temporary clinic address located two blocks away.