Medtronic PLC will build a campus in Lafayette, Colo., north of Denver to consolidate existing research workers there and add up to 1,000 more, according to plans approved this week by city officials.
Construction of the nearly 600,000-square-foot project is expected to begin sometime in May and finish in the fall of 2022.
Minneapolis-based Ryan Cos. has been selected as the builder for what will be three connected five-story buildings plus a multilevel parking lot on a 42-acre site. The project includes manufacturing, research and administrative space. An additional five-story structure could be added during the second phase of construction, city officials said Friday.
"It's definitely a huge project. It's a great project for us and for Medtronic," said Ryan Cos. spokeswoman Erica Dao.
The Lafayette City Council reviewed Medtronic and Ryan's initial plans in January and approved various zoning changes this week.
Medtronic spokesman John Jordan said the new campus in Lafayette will let Medtronic consolidate two campuses it has had in Colorado for more than 30 years. It now has about 1,000 workers in Louisville, Colo., and another 1,000 workers about 10 miles away in Boulder.
When the Lafayette campus is complete, all workers from both the other campuses will relocate there. Medtronic plans to add 500 to 1,000 additional workers in Lafayette over roughly the next eight years, Jordan said.
Jordan said that Minnesota, where Medtronic has its operational headquarters, was not considered as an alternative to the Lafayette project.
"We have a significant presence and we were not looking to relocate out of Colorado. We have been there for decades," he said. "It was never in our desire to relocate 2,000 people outside of Colorado. It is strategically important to have those businesses remain stable and to continue to foster our growth there."
He emphasized that the Colorado consolidation doesn't affect its plans in Minnesota. Before Medtronic bought Dublin, Ireland-based Covidien PLC in 2014, it had 8,000 employees in Minnesota. At the time, it promised to add workers in Minnesota and it has, he said.
Today, "we have more than 11,000 employees in Minnesota. We remain committed to Minnesota," Jordan said.
The state of Colorado agreed to give Medtronic $24.8 million worth of tax credits to help with the project.
One of Medtronic's Colorado facilities manufactures surgical cauterizing devices used on veins, arteries and organs. The other makes surgical equipment used during brain and spine procedures. The two Colorado businesses account for roughly 50% of Medtronic's $10 billion in annual surgical device sales, Jordan said. Medtronic reported total revenue of $28.91 billion for the fiscal year ended April 30.
Lafayette Economic Development Manager Brigid Keating said Colorado state, city and county officials were delighted to see Medtronic consolidate and grow locally. Officials are excited at the prospect of gaining 500 to 1,000 new Medtronic lab and factory employees, all of whom are expected to be highly trained biotech experts who will be paid roughly $131,000 a year, she said.
Medtronic, which has 90,000 employees worldwide, has its global headquarters in Dublin and is run from its offices in Fridley.
Dee DePass • 612-673-7725