The Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation, anticipating greater demand for outpatient addiction treatment at a facility already at capacity, is breaking ground this week on a significant expansion of its St. Paul campus.

The ceremonial start to the work is scheduled for Thursday at the Minnesota foundation's longtime Fellowship Club, west of downtown on Stewart Avenue between W. 7th Street and Shepard Road.

Foundation President and CEO Mark Mishek, Fellowship Club Executive Director Terri Hayden and foundation spokesman William Moyers will be attending.

"The current campus is at maximum capacity and unable to meet the additional demand for outpatient addiction treatment," read a statement from the foundation issued this week.

The foundation, formed in a merger in February, has been looking to increase the outpatient services it provides, based in part on the fact that the federal Affordable Care Act mandates insurance coverage for that kind of treatment.

A new 55,000-square-foot building and remodeling of one of the current St. Paul structures will be completed in phases over the next two years.

The first phase will involve replacing 55 residential beds by October 2015 as outpatient chemical health services grow.

Then the existing iconic mansion on the property will be remodeled by April 2016 to allow for a greater outpatient mental health clinic and administrative services.

When complete by October 2016, the foundation says, the Fellowship Club will be able to help twice as many people affected by addiction.

The Fellowship Club was established in 1953 with the mission to help addicts return to their everyday lives.

Hazelden, based in Center City, 45 miles northeast of Minneapolis, combined with the California-based Betty Ford Center to create a network that spans 15 care sites in nine states. The Betty Ford Center was named for former President Gerald Ford's wife and is widely recognized as the rehab facility for celebrities.

Hazelden, the older of the two institutions, is highly respected in the rehab community for its training and education programs, as well as its treatment system. Both facilities employ 12-step abstinence-based recovery regimens.

Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482