Planning Commission approves new Planned Parenthood Uptown clinic

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

The Minneapolis City Planning Commission on Monday approved Planned Parenthood’s plans to replace its Uptown clinic with a new clinic and office building.

The commission approved two land-use applications for the three-story building, which will replace Planned Parenthood’s existing Uptown clinic, located at Lagoon & Emerson. The project will allow Planned Parenthood to triple its annual patient capacity in Uptown, according to Jen Aulwes, communications director of Planned Parenthood North Central States.

The organization will provide all of the same services in the new building that are available in the existing building, including OB-GYN exams and pregnancy and sexually transmitted disease testing, according to Aulwes. The center’s services will include medication abortion.

Planned Parenthood plans on breaking ground in the spring and expects construction to last about nine–12 months, Aulwes said. The organization will be leasing a temporary clinic space located just a few blocks away from the site, and patients will be able to schedule appointments as normal, she said. Current patients will have no interruption in their care, according to a Planned Parenthood fact sheet.

The new clinic and office building will cost about $14 million, according to Aulwes, and will be funded entirely by donations, including one of $6.5 million from a local family. The project is part of a larger facilities initiative that Planned Parenthood North Central States is undertaking, Aulwes said.

The project will include a total of 69 parking spots, including two levels of enclosed employee parking and a fenced-in patient parking lot. The building will house a clinical research lab and Planned Parenthood North Central States’ education/outreach and patient-services staffs.

The organization’s headquarters will remain in St. Paul, but the Uptown location will be an “anchor” building,” Aulwes said.

“It’ll be one of our main hubs,” she said.

Aulwes said the architects and interior designers reviewed feedback Planned Parenthood received from patients focus groups while planning the building. She said the organization is incorporating items such as local art and greenery as a result of feedback.

Planned Parenthood North Central States serves Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska and the Dakotas, operating 29 clinics that serve over 114,000 patients annually. The organization is one of over 50 Planned Parenthood affiliates across the U.S.