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We were advised that we should place all options, including a relocation, on the table, so that we can truly compare all possibilities.

Relocation among Trudeau's options

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Two weeks after officials at Trudeau Institute announced plans to expand off-site, an internal memo indicates the Institute may also consider leaving Saranac Lake.

The memo from David Woodland, president and director of the biomedical research facility, lists "relocation, with the intent of re-purposing the Saranac Lake facilities" as one of the strategic options being considered for Trudeau's future development.

Trudeau is one of the area's largest employers. As Chris Knight reports, local officials are concerned.

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Chris Knight
Adirondack Correspondent

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Trudeau officials said last month that the Institute is considering either a possible on-campus expansion or building a clinical research facility in another, out-of-state location. The off-site facility would be located near a research hospital or university, allowing the Institute's scientists to conduct clinical trials on vaccines they've developed to combat influenza, tuberculosis and other diseases.

Last month, Trudeau Communications Manager Brian Turner said the Institute had no plans to scale back its operations in Saranac Lake.

Turner said Monday, however, that the decision to put the relocation option on the table was made after a conversation with the Institute's consultants.

"We were advised that we should place all options, including a relocation, on the table, so that we can truly compare all possibilities," he said in an email.

The internal memo, which was sent to all the Institute's staff Oct. 28, says Trudeau has hired the Westport, Conn.-based New England Consulting Group to study its expansion options. It says the consultants will work closely with Institute staff and faculty over the next few weeks to develop a report and recommendations.

Local officials had mixed reactions to the possibility of Trudeau expanding or moving to another site.

Village Mayor Clyde Rabideau applauded Trudeau officials for working to ensure the Institute's long-term viability.

Town of Harrietstown Supervisor Larry Miller said he wants to meet with Trudeau officials. He said he's worried about the possibility that the Institute, which employs 130 people, could leave Saranac Lake.

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