(Source: Pioneer Press)
The Hamm Clinic, which was in downtown St. Paul’s Hamm building for more than 60 years, has moved to new quarters.
The clinic’s longtime Hamm Building home was sold last year to a developer, who will convert it from office to residential use. Clinic leaders made the decision to move to a St. Paul building across the Mississippi River from downtown.
The clinic earlier this fall hosted an open house at its new home at 10 River Park Plaza. Much of the building was occupied until recently by Comcast, which has downsized.
“The negotiations for space turned out to be very positive for us,” said Linda Ewing, interim clinic director. A big advantage of the move is ample parking for staff and clients.
Located toward the north side of the building, the Hamm Clinic now spans 13,000 square feet on one level. It previously occupied 8,300 square feet spread across three levels of the Hamm Building, “which made it challenging,” Ewing said. “It is a big upgrade.”
The nonprofit clinic, which launched an ongoing capital campaign to cover the expansion, worked with an architect to achieve a build-out that emphasizes curved walls, natural lighting, a soothing color palette and other emblems of “trauma-informed” design, Ewing said. That includes hallways large enough for social workers and therapists to strike a reassuring pose walking elbow-to-elbow with clients, rather than leading in front of them.
As a training facility for a variety of therapists, the Hamm Clinic works with three psychiatrist-trainees at a time, as well as social workers and other mental health professionals. The organization is actively looking to hire more psychologists, Ewing said, and interviews for a permanent new executive director are underway. Six offices remain empty and available for future services and expansion.
The clinic was established in 1954 by Margaret Hamm Kelley, a social worker and granddaughter of St. Paul brewing titan Theodore Hamm.