MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The State of Minnesota has purchased a St. Paul facility that will temporarily store human remains of those who have died during the pandemic.
On Tuesday, the Ramsey County Assessor’s Office released the purchase agreement for the property, located on 1415 L’Orient Avenue in St. Paul. According to the document, the state closed on the property on Monday for a price of $5,475,000.READ MORE: Violence Free Minnesota Finds Help For Domestic Abuse Survivors
Earlier this month, the state authorized $6.9 million to the Minnesota Department of Administration for the storage facility.
Based on recent modeling, health officials say the pandemic could add up to 1,000 deaths per week during the peak — with half of all projected deaths occurring within a four- to five-week period.READ MORE: Saint Paul Regional Water Services Is Well-Equipped To Handle Heat And Drought
“COVID-19 is driving an increase in the number and rate of deaths in Minnesota … Funeral homes, medical examiner offices, and hospitals cannot meet the coming demand alone,” state officials said in a recent COVID-19 expenditure report.
State officials say the facility can handle a surge in demand for “timely, dignified, and temporary storage of human remains.”
Of the remaining funds, $1 million will go to projected building operating costs and $425,000 to improvements to the building.MORE NEWS: What Health Information Can Employers Require From Their Workers?
State health officials anticipate that the funds are reimbursable at 75% through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).