Rochester, MN (KROC AM News) – A new project being planned by Rochester Public Utilities may have a partner - Mayo Clinic.

RPU has been planning a new electrical substation to meet expected growth in the downtown, much of it driven by Mayo-related projects.

The RPU Board has been told Mayo has expressed interest in partnering with the utility “so that they can continue to serve their electrical loads to the standard of reliability that they require.”

A preliminary estimated cost of the substation and a planned duct and manhole system ranges from $26-million to $33.5-million. The current estimated cost of the substation alone is between $14.4-million and $17-million.

Under a Memorandum of Understanding approved Tuesday by the RPU board, Mayo would pay half the cost of the substation and contribute an unknown amount towards the duct and manhole system. The agreement would allow Mayo to have exclusive access to some of the power from the substation.

RPU spokesman Tony Benson says a site for the substation has not yet been selected.

Earlier discussion by RPU referred to the project as the Marion Rd Substation and an engineering and design services contract was awarded for the work in June.

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