Block E renamed 'Mayo Clinic Square' - KMSP-TV

Block E renamed 'Mayo Clinic Square' with Wolves partnership

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MINNEAPOLIS (KMSP) -

Block E is ready for a new look and a new name.

The Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx announced a partnership with Mayo Clinic for Block E on Tuesday that will include "state-of-the-art" practice facility to run around the clock all year long. It'll also be available for the Timberwolves youth basketball academy when the Wolves and Lynx are out of town, Timberwolves CEO Rob Moor said. 

The Mayo Clinic will open a 20,000-square-food sports medicine facility adjacent to the practice facility, and now, instead of Block E, the building will be called Mayo Clinic Square. In addition, the Mayo Clinic will become the medical provider for the Timberwolves and Lynx starting fall of 2014.

"This relationship is so unique. No one in the NBA has something like this," Flip Saunders, president of basketball operations for the Timberwolves, said of the Mayo Clinic partnership.

The Timberwolves and Lynx offices will also move from their location in the Target Center to the new location across from the Target Center. Block E is bounded by Hennepin Avenue, 6th Street, 7th Street and 1st Avenue in the Downtown West neighborhood.

While the renovation is expected to be complete by the end of 2015, Timberwolves officials say the practice facility should be completed by 2014 allowing training camp to be held at the new facility. 

"These are exciting times for both the Timberwolves and Lynx. I'm looking toward to our future in Mayo Clinic Square," Kevin Love said.

What the new Block E might look like: VIEW ALL PHOTOS

A few notable venues that currently occupy the space include the Shout House, Kieran's Irish Pub, Jimmy John's and Starbucks -- all of which will stay -- but gone is the retail that once dominated Hennepin Avenue. Block E has historically been dubbed a seedy area stuffed with unsavory bars and adult entertainment, and even after the "new" Block E was developed by Chicago-based McCaffery Interests in 2001, several entertainment venues still left the area, including Bellanotte, Hard Rock Cafe, Hooters, Applebee's, GameWorks and AMC Block E Theater 15.

The new owners of the failed entertainment complex in downtown Minneapolis have promised a "carefully orchestrated transformation worthy of its heart-of-the-city location."

Read more: Block E's storied history

Additionally, the Timberwolves announced in October a $97 million renovation project for the Target Center slated to begin next spring.

Read more: Target Center to undergo $97M renovation

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