After months of planning, 3M Co. will begin marketing its entire 40-acre East Side St. Paul campus today to a few select parties, company officials said Monday.

3M previously planned to sell 34 of the campus' 40 acres. However, a decision was made recently to include the entire parcel in an effort to make it more attractive.

"We believe offering the entire site for sale will be more appealing to a broader range of potential buyers," said spokeswoman Donna Fleming Runyon.

Welsh Companies will market the campus and has acted as a 3M consultant for months, along with Chicago-based Jones Lange LaSalle, the firm that helped appraise, inventory and prepare the parcel for market. 3M expects to have bids in by early March, to select a buyer by June and to complete the sale next year.

The industrial property, which sits next to the redeveloped Phalen Corridor and Globe asphalt and shingle property, served as 3M's headquarters from 1910 to 1962. It was later used to make industrial and flexible printing tapes. A number of the buildings are empty now.

In August about 100 tape and fabrication jobs were cut from the site when 3M relocated equipment to its plants in Springfield, Mo., and Knoxville, Iowa. About 1,000 engineers and call-center workers remain on campus, but they will be relocated to 3M's Maplewood headquarters or other facilities before the sale becomes official, Runyon said.

St. Paul City Council members have said that the parcel could be attractive to businesses because of its proximity to rail lines and to the $600 million renovation project along the Phalen Corridor.

No pollution or other environmental issues have been found on the property, they said.

Dee DePass • 612-673-7725