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Gundersen undertaking full restoration for new clinic downtown



A new dental specialties clinic for Gundersen in downtown La Crosse might be going into an old building, but it should look like new when complete.

The medical system is going through an approval process in city hall for the rehab of what was the Wettstein’s building downtown.

City senior planner Tim Acklin says it’s going to be a detailed historic restoration and the latest example of similar projects in the downtown.

“People understand the value of our downtown from an economic point of view, tourism point of view, visual point of view,” Acklin said, “And they get it.

“A lot of windows and storefronts being remodeled and its fantastic. I think people just get that this is becoming the entertainment retail hub. More so than it was.”

Plans have been submitted to the city showing a complete historic restoration to the 19th century building.

The multi-phase rehab process for the clinic will eventually mean removal of all the stucco left on the building. It’s expected to open in April of next year.

Acklin says that kind of building rehab is part of a trend in the downtown.

“They see other people doing it,” he said. “They see the value that’s there, and they understand it and want to be a part of it.

“And, so we’re just seeing that, not just with Gundersen, but other people as well.”

A handful of other restoration projects are underway in the downtown. Catalyst for the work, says Acklin, continues to be the state’s historic tax credits.

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