Jeramey Jannene
Eyes on Milwaukee

Rexnord Moving Downtown

Milwaukee-based industrial conglomerate will lease office buildings on Michigan St.

By - Feb 19th, 2019 10:01 am
105-1111 W. Michigan St. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

105-111 W. Michigan St. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

Rexnord Corporation, the publicly-traded industrial conglomerate, will shift some of its corporate operations to 111 W. Michigan St. in downtown Milwaukee. Some sources say the company could move its corporate headquarters there, others say no.

The firm will become an anchor tenant in the redevelopment of the two-building complex at 105-111 W. Michigan St. 111 Michigan Partners LLC will acquire the building from long-time owner Towne Realty, an affiliate of Zilber Ltd.

Included in the deal is a 100,250-square-foot, five-story building at the corner of N. Plankinton Ave. and W. Michigan St., as well as a 10-story building with three floors of office space atop a seven-story parking garage located immediately east. The second building contains 50,618 square feet of office space according to city records. The parking garage is listed at 660 stalls.

The two-building complex had an assessed value of $15,526,000 in 2018. The eastern building is located along the Milwaukee RiverWalk, with Milwaukee Boat Line docking alongside.

Rexnord, currently headquartered in the Global Water Center, has more than 8,000 employees worldwide. The company’s website boasts manufacturing, warehouse and repair facilities on six continents.

The firm has been led by Todd Adams since 2009. At the close of trading on February 15th, it had a market capitalization of $2.9 billion. The company reported $2.07 billion in revenue for its 2018 fiscal year. Rexnord did not respond to a request for comment.

Rexnord, which can trace its history back to the 1892 formation of the Chain Belt Company in Milwaukee, operates through a number of divisions including Rexnord Gear (formerly Falk). The company built a new headquarters for its water solutions division, Zurn Industries, in the Reed Street Yards business park in 2015. In addition to Zurn, the company lists key offices in Downers Grove, Illinois (aerospace) and 4701 W. Greenfield Ave. in West Milwaukee (power transmission).

Urban Milwaukee, in discussions with multiple sources close to the deal, has learned that developer Dennis Klein is involved in the transaction and will play a role in rehabbing the complex. Klein did not respond to a request for comment. Firms affiliated with Klein were involved in the creation of the new Zurn headquarters and Global Water Center.

The complex Rexnord will soon occupy is largely vacant today. It was recently home to long-term care center operator Fortis Management Group, which filed for receivership in 2017. Approximately 250 people were laid off as a result.

Fortis, formed from an acquisition of previous complex tenant Extendicare, announced it would close the Milwaukee facility by September 2018 as part of selling off its 65 care centers.

The complex on W. Michigan is one of many buildings in Westown being redeveloped. The Shops of Grand Avenue, located kitty-corner from the 111 building, is being redeveloped into a mixed-use facility anchored by engineering firm Graef. Just north of the former mall the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra is transforming the former Warner Grand Theatre into a music hall. Immediately west of the Rexnord building, a Cambria Hotel is being constructed.


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One thought on “Eyes on Milwaukee: Rexnord Moving Downtown”

  1. Sam C says:

    This would be exciting if they weren’t just moving from offices down the street. That seems to be the only thing happening for commercial space in the city, a game of musical chairs.

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