A firm with deep ties to Mayo Clinic is making a move to anchor a downtown Madison, Wis., biosciences hub with help from the development manager of Rochester's Destination Medical Center initiative.
Exact Sciences Corp. licensed technology from Mayo Clinic in 2009 and 2012 for Cologuard, a stool-based DNA test for colorectal cancer. The test is based on research by Mayo Clinic's Dr. David A. Ahlquist and his laboratory.
Originally based in Boston, city officials at one point hoped Exact would move to Rochester. However, Madison gave the company $1 million to move its headquarters there in 2009.
Since then, the company has flourished, and now it's planning to build a new $200 million, 250,000-square-foot headquarters in downtown Madison with $46.7 million in financial aid from the city.The Madison City Council recently OKed the deal, which requires that Exact will have 400 employees in the building by 2019.
The developer of the project is JDS Development LLC, which is a joint venture between Hammes Co. and Majestic Realty. Hammes is the Wisconsin consultant that is in charge of DMC. It also is working directly with Mayo Clinic on the Discovery Square portion of the DMC project. Hammes also has been hired by the Rochester Convention and Visitors Bureau to do a feasibility study for the proposed hockey arena to house a possible US Hockey League team here.
Hammes' Exact development will include a 250 room hotel, a food court, health and wellness facility, conference and media centers and lots of room for retail and restaurants.
Exact CEO Kevin Conroy told the Madison City Council that, "We hope that by having a life science company headquarters in downtown Madison, it will spur economic development throughout the region and have a positive impact on downtown."