Dean History: New Building- Dean - WI

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Dean Medical Group's History

A Tour Through The Decades

Dean History: New Building

Dean Clinic Moves to Fish Hatchery Road

During the 1950s, Dean Clinic’s downtown facility was becoming increasingly crowded. Physicians were crammed into inadequate offices. The building code forbade adding another floor to the clinic building. There was no way to expand without giving up the small parking lot.

The parking lot itself was inadequate, and patients often would park there for their office appointments and then leave their cars while they went shopping on the Capitol Square. Patients also sometimes complained that they couldn’t find parking near the clinic. And, heavy traffic and one-way streets made reaching the clinic difficult. So, its physicians decided to explore the possibilities of building a medical facility elsewhere in Madison.

Finding a good location

They inquired if St. Mary’s Hospital would sell them land across the street from the hospital, but St. Mary’s refused because they were advised that they might need that land in the future to expand the hospital. Former Governor Rennebohm encouraged Dean’s Dr. Art Sonneland to consider purchasing land near Hilldale for Dean, but the price was too expensive.

Finally, in August of 1959, an agreement was signed to purchase three acres of land on the 1300 block of Fish Hatchery Road for $30,000. Even though there were concerns among several of the physicians that this location was too far from downtown and was “way out in the country,” its proximity to St. Mary’s Hospital, in part, swayed many of the physicians to support the purchase.

Clinic construction and expansion

On January 1, 1960, ten of the twelve partners at Dean Clinic formed the Wingra Building Group as the new owners of the site. Dr. Schneiders and Dr. Charles Burke, who had also been members of the Dean Clinic partnership, elected not to invest in the building project because they felt they were approaching retirement.

The Wingra Building Group proceeded with contracting for the construction of the building and Dean Clinic moved into the new medical facilities at 1313 Fish Hatchery Road on July 4, 1961. The Dean Corporation sold the downtown building around the same time, and the Corporation was dissolved. In anticipation of the need for future expansion, Dr. Frank Dean astutely purchased three acres of land across the street from the new clinic. It was eventually sold to the clinic to be used for additional parking.

The workload at the new clinic rapidly increased, necessitating expansion of the facility. A new wing was added to the building in 1965, allowing Dean Clinic to offer the specialties of obstetrics, ENT (ear, nose and throat), and urology. A second addition was completed in 1968 to accommodate orthopedics, radiology and pediatrics. Four subsequent expansions occurred during the next twenty years.

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