Blooming Prairie-based Minimizer broke ground this past week on a new building in the Owatonna Industrial Park. In their weekly e-newsletter, the Owatonna Area Chamber of Commerce and Tourism reports the facility will be 100,000 square feet and bring all of their employees under one roof.

In a press release on their website, Minimizer states they currently employee 83 people overall with 66 of them across three buildings in Blooming Prairie. The others work in locations around the United States and Canada.

CEO Christopher Thorpe says in the release, "Given our current and future sales growth, as well as new product introductions, the new facility is a necessity. We are currently operating out of three buildings and we are simply out of room in Blooming Prairie and need more efficient space."

Thorpe added, "Blooming Prairie will always be known as the place where Minimizer started. This site in Owatonna also offers a chance to expand our footprint an additional one-hundred-thousand square-feet, if necessary. We want our employees in on the ground floor of this project. The new facility represents a better work environment for everyone, as well as more amenities, so employee input and feedback is critical."

Minimizer manufactures poly semi truck fenders, mud flaps, tool boxes, work benches and other accessories.

In other news from the Owatonna chamber, a Business After Hours will be held on Tuesday, October 22 at the new location of HomeTown Credit Union, just south of Hyvee Foods in Owatonna. It runs 5:30 to 7 pm.

The chamber will host an information meeting regarding the proposed new Owatonna High School bond referendum on Tuesday, October 29 at 5 pm at the chamber office.

Read also: Minnesota Department of Education gives OK to Owatonna School District proposal of a new high school. Early voting continues through November 4 on the bond referendum. Voters wishing to go to the polls will do so on Tuesday, November 5, 2019.