Gundersen Health System is expanding into downtown La Crosse with its purchase of the Wettstein's building.
Gundersen made the announcement Monday morning, only a few days after Dan Wettstein said he was closing his business after 67 years in La Crosse.
Plans call for the building to house Gundersen's Dental Specialties department which is currently in the La Crosse Clinic.
"We are excited to purchase this historic building and be a part of the thriving downtown community,” says Gundersen CEO, Scott Rathgaber, MD. “This location will allow our patients better access to our dental services and allow us to continue to grow our dental specialties practice.”
At the new location, Gundersen will provide orthodontics, periodontics, prosthodontics, pediatric dentistry, and endodontics.
Dan Wettstein said in a statement that he was pleased with the future use of the building. “While it was not an easy decision for Gerianne and me to decide to close our business, knowing that a well-respected, community-focused business like Gundersen was interested in purchasing the building, reassured us that we were leaving the building and downtown in good hands,” commented Wettstein.
There are apartments on the second floor of that building; Rathgaber says those are not going to be affected and the lease agreements will continue to be honored. Wettsteins currently resides in buildings with historic facades as well. The plan is to maintain the historic perspective during renovations.
Rathgabger did not disclose how much Gundersen paid for the building. He did however clarify that although the hospital portion of Gundersen is tax exempt, their clinics are not. The new location at 215 North 3rd Street will continue to provide tax dollars to the city.
Gundersen currently ranks number 1 in property taxes paid in La Crosse County.
Wettstein's is expected to close next month. Once renovated, Gundersen plans to open the new clinic in April 2019.