A Week of Ground-Breaking News
Announcement of Johnson Controls' 50-story lakefront tower is week's biggest development.
“This is maybe one of the biggest deals ever for downtown,” Bauman told the BizTimes.
Talk of the potential project had entered the streetcar debate the previous week as Johnson Controls spokesman Fraser Engerman explained part of the site selection processs in Journal Sentinel story by Tom Daykin, saying: “a key consideration is a vibrant community with convenient transportation and easy access to our facilities. As a result we also have a keen interest in the downtown streetcar project and are monitoring that situation closely.”
Business Journal reporter Rich Kirchen broke another of the week’s big stories. Kirchen reported that Gov. Scott Walker will include a ‘jock tax,’ the diversion of players income tax to help pay for a new NBA arena, in his upcoming executive budget proposal.
And yesterday, Journal Sentinel reporter Don Behm reported that Preserve our Parks is asking the Wisconsin Supreme Court to halt the county land sale for The Couture, a 44-story lakefront tower, by sending the county’s request to circuit court, arguing it violates the state constitution as part of the land is former lake bed which is protected by the Public Trust Doctrine.
On the neighborhood redevelopment front, Walnut Way Conservation Corp’s first phase of The Innovation and Wellness Commons project, which will be located at 1609-1615 W. North Ave., officially broke ground. The $2 million first phase is being led by Juli Kaufmann’s Fix Development and will include a complete redevelopment of an existing building and a substantial addition. Outpost Natural Foods, Milwaukee Center for Independence, Fondy Food Center, and The Juice Kitchen have signed Letters of Intent to occupy space in the building. Fundraising for the $4 million second phase, which would include a new building with Outpost as the anchor tenant, is still ongoing.
In other news…
Apparently, Northwestern Mutual’s needs for office space can’t wait until the Northwestern Mutual Tower and Commons project is finished. Sean Ryan, of the Business Journal, reported that NM recently leased two floors in the 411 Building in downtown Milwaukee.
One other new project was announced; The BizTimes reported that the Milwaukee franchise of Sign-A-Rama plans to move into a new $1.7 million building to be built in the Menomonee Valley Industrial Center.
And in case you missed it, Friday Photos featured the 700 Lofts, a 49-unit apartment building under construction in Westown.