Transforming Reed Street Yards
The city is spending $6.2 million to pave way for new water technology park.
However grand the goal of turning Milwaukee into a worldwide center of the water industry, progress is certainly being made toward that goal. The city’s partnership with General Capital Group to redevelop a vacant 17-acre property in the Walker’s Point neighborhood, the Reed Street Yards, into a the Global Water Technology Park is moving along, and attracting interest. The intent is to redevelop the Reed Street Yards into a site for future spin-off businesses from the Global Water Center, 247 Freshwater Way, and for any other water industry firms to grow in the city.
The center opened in September 2013 and already has tenants ranging from established businesses such as Badger Meter, Inc. and A.O. Smith Group to small firms such as Hanging Gardens LLC. Additionally, the UW-Milwaukee School of Freshwater Sciences has research staff located in the center. And recently, as Alison Bauter of the Business Journal reported, Rexnord Corp. will be relocating its headquarters to the facility.
The water technology park will be located just west of the water center. To help transform Reed Street Yards, the city is spending $6.2 million to construct a new street with permeable pavement in its parking lane along with such environmental touches as bio swales, rain gardens and recycled water piping (purple pipes). The city is also creating an extension of the Hank Aaron State Trail and a new RiverWalk.
In February, Tom Daykin, of the Journal Sentinel, reported that “General Capital President Michael Weiss said his firm is in discussions with prospective business park users. He expects the park’s first development to begin construction in 2014.”